POHAKULOA TRAINING AREA, Hawaii - The Department of the Army Fire and Emergency Services has recognized a firefighter for his continued excellence in improving safety conditions, both here and in the greater community.

Firefighter Steven Coloma, U.S. Army Garrison-Pohakuloa, has been named the Installation Management Command-Pacific's 2009 Firefighter of the Year.

Coloma was lauded for his dedication, knowledge and leadership in firefighting. He has organized and implemented programs to streamline processes. Also, on days off, he has taught fire safety to children at various elementary schools throughout the community during his off-duty time.

The selection as IMCOM-P's top firefighter qualifies Coloma to be entered in the U.S. Army Firefighter of the Year award program. The winner will be announced in August.

The Army awards program recognizes excellence and accomplishments and identifies those who represent the best of the Army. Awards are presented for the following categories: Large Fire Department, Small Fire Department, Fire Prevention Program, Fire Academy Instructor, Military Firefighter, Civilian Firefighter, Military Fire Officer, Civilian Fire Officer and Firefighter Heroism.

"We are proud of Mr. Coloma's accomplishments and applaud his sincere dedication to the betterment of the firefighters and the community he protects," said Scotty Freeman, fire chief, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii.

"We wish him luck in these upcoming challenges and know that he represents the best in Hawaii and the world," Freeman added.

(Editor's Note: Mike Egami, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Public Affairs, contributed to this article.)