By Mr. George MarkfelderJuly 24, 2017
U.S. Army Garrison Fort A.P. Hill Department of Emergency Services Fire Department sponsored and hosted a two day Fire Leadership Seminar July 8 -- 9, 2017.
Retired Battalion Chiefs John Salka and Rick Lasky were the instructors for the seminar; both bringing years of experience to the event.
Salka is a 28 year veteran with the New York Fire Department (FDNY) and was a battalion Chief in the Bronx. He has instructed in numerous capacities at the FDNY Training Academy and is a nationally recognized instructor and lecturer.
Lasky, a 34 year veteran of the fire service, served as chief of the Lewisville, Texas Fire Department for 12 years. He was a contributor in developing the "Saving Our Own" program and served as the co-lead instructor for the H.O.T. Firefighter Survival program at Fire Department Instructor's Conference (FDIC) for more than 10 years.
More than 40 first responders from more than six states participated including Firefighters from Fort A.P. Hill, Marine Corps Base Quantico, Naval District Washington Indian Head, Fort Lee, Spotsylvania Co. Fire Department, Hanover Co. Fire Department, Caroline Co. Fire Department, and the State of Virginia Office of Fire Programs.
The seminar covered such leadership and discipline topics as peer mentoring, team building, operations and expectations on the fire ground, rapid intervention team skills & tactics as well as firefighter survival.
Assistant Fire Chief, Keith Buchanan, of the Ladysmith Vol. Fire Dept. in Caroline County said, "It's the best training that I have received in my 32 years in the Fire Service."
Fort A.P. Hill's Assistant Fire Chief of Training, Peter M. Orioles, said the training was organized with fire safety and communications in mind, not just for the post fire department but the surrounding local, state and federal departments and agencies as well.
"The fire & emergency services within the DoD, State and local counties all require ongoing leadership & skills training and by learning together, we work together seamlessly in the event of an emergency," said Orioles. "Our community training initiative network fosters the growing interoperability, so when the need may arise, we can execute our mission for the public."