The Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI) is governed by an 11-member commission representing a cross-section of the fire service industry, including fire departments, city and county management, code councils, the U.S. Department of Defense, and the International Association of Firefighters. The commission meets biennially, in the spring and during the International Association of Fire Chief's Fire Rescue International conference in the fall, to review all of the agencies applying for accredited status.
In addition, the commission:
- Oversees the development of CFAI materials and training to support its mission.
- Makes recommendations to the Board of Directors on policy and financial decisions.
- Oversees general organizational operation and special programs and activities.
- Revises the accreditation model and self-assessment process.
- Manages issues related to self and peer assessment.
- Researches and develops specific topics within the self-assessment model
Steven Westermann, CFO, Commission Chair
Representative: Fire Agencies (serving populations of 25,000 - 99,999)
Central Jackson County Fire Protection District
1609 NE Scarborough Drive
Blue Springs, MO 64014
Chief Westermann has served as chief of department to the Central Jackson County Fire Protection District since 1988 and has been in the fire service since 1972. He has served as the President of the International Association of Fire Chiefs, 2007-2008. Prior to serving as president, he served as the International Director for the Missouri Valley Division, president of the Missouri Valley Division. He was on the IAFC's NFPA 1710 Implementation Guide Task Force and more recently served as Chairman of the IAFC's Fire Service Image Task Force. He has served as president of both the Heart of America Kansas City Metro Fire Chiefs Council and the Missouri Association of Fire Chiefs. Chief Westermann has a Master's in Public Administration from the University of Missouri-KC, is an Executive Fire Officer graduate, Chief Fire Officer Designate, a graduate of the Senior Executives in State and Local Government program at Harvard University and a graduate of the Homeland Security Executive Leaders Program of the Center for Homeland Defense and Security. He currently serves on the Executive Board for IFSTA and is a member of the NFA's Board of Visitors. He also currently serves as a facilitator for the IAFC/IAFF Labor Management Initiative.
Thomas Thompson, CFO, Commission Vice-Chair
Representative: U.S. Department of Defense
USMC Camp Pendleton
PO Box 555211
Camp Pendleton, CA 92055
Chief Thompson is the Fire Chief of USMC Camp Pendleton Fire & Emergency Services in California. He served as Fire Chief for USMC Barstow, leading that organization to become the first USMC facility to achieve accredited agency status. Chief Thompson has successfully lead Camp Pendleton to accredited status and is now the first fire chief in DoD to successfully lead two organizations to accredited status. Previously he served as Assistant Fire Chief at McChord AFB. He has continuously served in the industry as a sworn military and civilian firefighter since 1983. His military service includes an assignment aboard the Aircraft Carrier USS Enterprise as a Flight Deck Crash and Salvage Firefighter. Chief Thompson is married to Patricia Thompson and they have three daughters, one son, and five grandchildren.
Jim Brinkley, Commissioner
Director, Department of Occupational Health and Safety
1750 New York Ave
Washington, DC 20006
Jim Brinkley is the Director of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Department of Occupational Health and Safety. The IAFF, headquartered in Washington, DC, represents more than 298,000 full-time professional fire fighters and paramedics who protect 85 percent of the nation's population. More than 3,100 affiliates and their members protect communities in every state in the United States and in Canada.
Prior to coming to the IAFF Jim served for more than 21 years with the Prince George's County Fire/EMS Department, and 14 years as a member of the Prince George's County Professional Fire Fighters & Paramedics Association, IAFF local 1619 Executive Board. Jim has received several awards and commendations for his work in fire fighter health and safety. As a member of his departmental safety committee he was responsible for evaluating and testing personal protective equipment including turn-out gear, P.A.S.S. devices, and S.C.B.A. At the time of his retirement he had just been re-elected as President of IAFF Local 1619. During his tenure he was instrumental in developing the Department's wellness fitness program and the Department's "Fire Fighter Survival Program". His efforts played a significant role in Local 1619 receiving the Congressional Fire Service Institute Senator Paul S. Sarbanes Fire Service Safety Leadership Award for 2008. Jim was also one of the original instructors with the IAFF Partnership Education Program.
Jim was responsible for overseeing the revisions for the IAFF/IAFC Wellness Fitness Initiative and the Peer Fitness Training (PFT) program. He directed collaborative initiatives with outside agencies to develop and implement a smoking cessation program and a hypertension awareness and treatment program. Jim also directed the development of the IAFF Fire Ground Survival Program and the revision of the IAFF Line of Duty Death and Injury Investigation Program. Jim serves as a member of the Technical Committee on Fire Service Occupational Safety and Health for the National Fire Protection Association. In addition to these duties, Jim also provides expert testimony to assist in arbitration cases and passing presumptive cancer, heart and infectious disease legislation to assist IAFF members.
Steve Dirksen, CFO, Commissioner
Representative: Fire Agencies (serving populations of 100,000 - 249,000)
Fargo Fire Department
637 Np Ave N
Fargo, ND 58102-4916
Chief Steve Dirksen is the Fire Chief for the City of Fargo North Dakota. Chief Dirksen began his firefighting service in 1989 when he joined the Rock Valley (IA) Volunteer Fire Department. In 1994, he was hired by the Sioux Falls (SD) Fire Department. He was promoted to Captain in 2005. In 2006, he was promoted to Battalion Chief and served as the Training Battalion Chief for three years. He was appointed as a Shift Battalion Chief from 2009 until November of 2011 when he became the Fire Chief for the City of Fargo. Chief Dirksen has a Bachelor’s Degree in Management and a Master of Business Administration Degree from the University of Sioux Falls, is an Executive Fire Officer Graduate, and Chief Fire Officer Designate. He is a member of FEMA Region VIII Regional Advisory Committee to the Regional Administrator. He has been a member of the EFO Symposium Planning Committee since 2013 and serves as the Chair of the Executive Leadership Outstanding Research Award Review Team. Chief Dirksen is married to his wife Gayle and they have one daughter and one son.
Steve Dongworth, Commissioner
Calgary Fire Department
4124 11th Street SE
Calgary, AB T2G 3H2
On December 12, 2014, The City of Calgary announced Steve Dongworth as Calgary's new fire chief, starting January 1, 2015. He has more than 35 years experience in municipal fire and emergency services. He joined the Calgary Fire Department in 1992, and was promoted to deputy chief in 2000.
Previously, Dongworth was the deputy chief of Community Standards, Recruitment and Training. In this role, he oversaw The Calgary Fire Department's Inspection & Investigation sections, which include fire safety codes officers who enforce the provisions of the Alberta Safety Codes Act, fire investigators and the Accelerant Detection Canine program as well as recruitment, firefighter and recruit training, and the Fire Cadet program. Prior to this, Dongworth served in a variety of deputy chief commands including Operations, Training, Community Services, Administration and Emergency Management. He has led a wide variety of projects from the development of false alarm fees to the creation of the Community Safety section.
Gary Fredericksen, CFO, Commissioner
Representative: Fire Agencies (serving populations under 25,000)
Yocha Dehe Fire Department
14170 Golf Course Dr. Brooks, CA 95606
Chief Gary Fredericksen has been the fire chief for the Yocha Dehe Fire Department (YDFD) since 2012. Prior to that, he served as the Division Chief for the West Sacramento Fire Department in charge of Operations and Administration where he oversaw an $11.5 million budget with sixty line and seven administrative personnel. At YDFD, Fredericksen commands 32 uniformed personnel, three full-time administrative employees, and a full complement of fire suppression, emergency response and rescue equipment.
Fredericksen has served as chair of the Yolo Emergency Communications Agency (YECA) Board, where he played a vital role in securing a $1.5 million communications grant to purchase a new computerized automatic dispatch system. Over the past three years, Chief Fredericksen has been instrumental in creating and establishing the Yolo County Emergency Medical Services Agency, which is responsible for reducing ambulance response times throughout Yolo County. He serves as the Chair of the Yolo County Fire Chiefs Association and is the Yolo County Fire/Rescue Mutual Aid Coordinator for the California Office of Emergency Services (OES). In addition, he serves as the tribal representative for Cal OES Region 4 Peer Review Committee and the Secretary for the California Tribal Fire Chiefs Association.
Chief Fredericksen recently received the designatation of Chief Fire Officer (CFO) from the Commission on Professional Credentialing.
Ken Holland, Commissioner
Representative: Consensus Standards
National Fire Protection Association
1 Batterymarch Park
Quincy, MA 02169
Ken is a Senior Emergency Service Specialist with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Ken's work at the NFPA involves working with several technical committees that develop and maintain various safety standards revolving around Fire Service Occupational Safety and Health (FSOSH), the EMS community, Fire Department Apparatus, and the new NFPA 1917, Standard for Automotive Ambulances.
Ken has 23 years in EMS, of which 19 years he has devoted his time to being a paramedic. Before the NFPA, Ken was a member of the Bridgewater, Massachusetts Fire Department for 5 years as a fire fighter/paramedic and the ALS coordinator for the department. Ken has his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and an MBA in Public Administration.
Kevin Kuntz, P. E., Commissioner
Representative: Insurance Industry
Assistant Vice President
Risk Decision Services
Kevin Kuntz is an Assistant Vice President with ISO Risk Decision Services (RDS). Mr. Kuntz leads the Risk Engineering and Technical Support & Training groups for RDS.
Mr. Kuntz has over 30 years experience in the insurance industry specializing in risk control for major accounts and complex risks. Prior to joining ISO, Mr. Kuntz spent over 20 years with Marsh in various leadership positions related to risk control including national practice leader for the oil & chemical consulting practice. His prior experience also includes seven years with Industrial Risk Insurers, where he had direct control and responsibility over engineers providing loss control services. His experience includes work in well over 30 countries on 6 continents.
Mr. Kuntz serves as the RDS lead technical resource and director of national policy on a variety of commercial lines underwriting/loss control and specific risk engineering subjects and has primary responsibility ISO's three primary schedules indicated below:
- Specific Commercial Property Evaluation Schedule (SCOPES) which underlies RDS field rating activities for individual buildings
- Fire Suppression Rating Schedule (FSRS)that is used as the basis of ISO's Public Protection Classification Program
- Building Code Effectiveness Grading Schedule (BCEGS) which assesses the building codes in effect the level of implementation
Mr. Kuntz has served on several National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards committees, is a member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE), and is a Licensed Fire Official in the state of New Jersey. He served as Department Chief and Chief of the Fire Prevention Bureau of the North Brunswick Volunteer Fire Department and presently serves as an active firefighter with both the North Brunswick and Montgomery Township fire departments in New Jersey.
He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering with an emphasis on structural design from Tulane University. He also holds the Professional Engineer (PE) designation in the discipline of fire protection.
Steve Riley, ICMA-CM, Commissioner
Representative: ICMA City Manager
One Town Center Court
Hilton Head Island, SC 29928
Steve Riley serves as Town Manager for the Town of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina; a position he has held since 1994. Steve oversees the daily operations of an organization that serves a resort island whose summertime population swells to three times its permanent population. Steve previously served as the Town's Community Development Director. Prior to joining the Town of Hilton Head Island, Steve served in the private sector with a Minneapolis-based architecture/engineering as a Planner. Steve has served stints as the Planning Director for the City of Beaufort, SC and as a Planner for Beaufort County, South Carolina. Steve was appointed by the Governor to the South Carolina Planning Education Advisory Committee in 2005, when the committee was created, and has served as its only Chairman. A Credentialed City Manager, Steve is a past president of the South Carolina City and County Management Association; and currently serves on the ICMA Sustainable Communities Advisory Committee. Originally from Omaha, NE, Steve holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Master's Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Iowa. Steve and his wife, Mary Jo, have four children and two grandchildren.
Representative: Fire Agencies (serving populations of more than 250,000)
Representative: ICMA County Manager