2015 – Year in Review

2015 has been a tremendously busy yet successful year for the Center for Public Safety Excellence. Here are some of the highlights:

CPSE staff visited with ten consortiums during 2015 and enjoyed learning firsthand the benefits agencies and individuals garner from accreditation and credentialing and some of the challenges they face. Accredited agencies and credentialed professionals have found that banding together to form regional consortiums is an effective networking opportunity. Through the important work of these consortiums, agencies and individuals that are new to CPSE programs gain local support in achieving and maintaining accreditation and/or designation.

Consortium States Represented Month Visited
Arizona Consortium Arizona July
California Fire Rescue Accreditation Credentialing Consortium California July
Florida Association for Fire Accreditation & Professional Credentialing Florida May
Great Lakes Fire Accreditation Managers Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana January
Heart of America Fire Chiefs Council Accreditation Task Force Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas August
Iowa Consortium Iowa, Nebraska, and South Dakota October
Michigan-Ohio-Indiana Consortium Michigan, Ohio, Indiana May
North Carolina Consortium North Carolina, Virginia April
Rocky Mountain Accreditation and Professional Credentialing Consortium Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico October
Virginia Consortium Virginia February

CPSE saw growth in most program areas during 2015, closing the year with 217 accredited agencies and 1695 credentialed officers. This growth was possible only through the effort and talent of over 500 volunteers that conducted over 50 site assessments and 900 peer reviews.

Both commissions, CFAI and CPC, met twice in person during the year (at the CPSE Excellence Conference and IAFC’s FRI) and held multiple web meetings. New members joined both commissions in 2015 and brought with them new insights to the important work of these groups.

Commission on Fire Accreditation International, March 2015


Commission on Professional Credentialing, March 2015

CPSE’s annual Excellence Conference, held in March 2015 in Orlando, FL, offered attendees multiple education and networking opportunities. Later in the year, CPSE had the opportunity to recognize and celebrate agencies that had been accredited and officers who had been credentialed in the prior 12 months. At the CPSE annual banquet, held in August 2015 in Atlanta, GA, the Picard, Coleman, and Ambassador awards were bestowed.

Opening Session at the CPSE Excellence Conference, March 2015


Attendees at the Awards Banquet in August, 2015

CPSE had the opportunity to engage new audiences with presentations at the California, South Carolina, and Wisconsin Fire Chiefs annual conferences, FRI, and the VCOS Symposium. In addition, CPSE staffed exhibits at the following conferences: FDIC, FireHouse Expo, Hazard Zone, IAFF Redmond, ICMA, and NACO.

The greatest highlight of the year was the development of the 9th edition of the accreditation model through a technical working group, public comment, and commission and board approval. The result of this tireless effort by so many of CPSE’s committed volunteers was the publication of the 9th edition of the Fire and Emergency Service Self-Assessment Manual.

Cover of the New FESSAM

One of the low moments this year was the loss of our friend and colleague Mike Worthington. In his honor, CPSE is placing a commemorative brick on the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Walk of Honor. CPSE looks forward to continuing to honor Mike’s memory during the 2016 Excellence Conference.

Earlier this month, the CPSE Board of Directors met to chart the course for the organization in 2016. Stay tuned for updates, changes, and enhancements throughout 2016.

CPSE Welcomes New Volunteer Leaders

The Center for Public Safety Excellence (CPSE) recently appointed new volunteer leaders to its Board of Directors, Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI), and Commission on Professional Credentialing (CPC).

Chief R. Allan Cain, Fire Chief, Town of Cary, NC joined the nine-member Board. The CPSE Board provides strategic oversight and direction for all CPSE programs. Chief Cain was appointed as one of two International Association of Fire Chiefs’ representatives on the Board.

Chief James Sideras, Fire Chief, Sioux Falls, SD joined the eleven-member CFAI. CFAI is tasked with monitoring the process for fire agency accreditation and granting accreditation during public hearings. Chief Sideras was nominated by the IAFC representing communities 100,000 to 249,999.

Chief Daniel Gaumont, Navy Fire and Emergency Services Headquarters, joined the eleven-member CPC. CPC is responsible for establishing the requirements and process for gaining CPSE’s five professional designations. CPC meets six times a year to approve new and renewal designation applications. Chief Gaumont was nominated by the Department of Defense as the federal representative to CPC.

With these appointments, Chief Wayne Senter has stepped down from the Board of Directors, Chief Cain has stepped down from the CFAI, and Chief Don Striejewske has stepped down from CPC. CPSE thanks these individuals for their many years of committed services to CPSE and its mission.

CPSE welcomes these new volunteer leaders to the organization and looks forward to working with and learning from them in the years to come.

Allan Cain

A 34-year member of the fire service, Allan Cain serves as fire chief for the Town of Cary N. C. and has served on the Commission on Fire Accreditation International since 2009. Allan holds an advisory committee appointment for Durham Technical Community College fire protection degree program. He chairs the N.C. Metropolitan Fire Chiefs Coalition and previously served on the N.C. Association of Fire Chiefs executive development program advisory committee.

Chief Cain is a CFO designee, an EFO graduate and is certified as a fire officer, fire instructor and fire fighter by the N.C. Fire/Rescue Commission.

Chief Cain holds a master’s degree in public administration from North Carolina State University and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from North Carolina Wesleyan College. In addition, he holds certificates for Community Preparedness – Disaster Management, Municipal Administration and Budgeting and Financial Management from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

James Sideras

Chief Jim Sideras, CFO, CEMSO, MIFireE, is Fire Chief of the Sioux Falls Fire Rescue in Sioux Falls, SD. Chief Sideras is an accomplished executive leader with a strong portfolio of successes involving optimization of operations within the fire service, military, and medical arenas. The chief holds a Master’s of Science in Nursing and is a graduate of both the Executive Fellowship in State and Local Governmental Studies at Harvard University and the Executive Fire Officer Program at the National Fire Academy.

Daniel Gaumont

Chief Gaumont has been in the fire service since 1973, working his way up from entry-level volunteer firefighter in Massachusetts to his current position as Senior Fire Protection Specialist on the staff of Commander Navy Installations Command, Navy Fire & Emergency Services Program.

Chief Gaumont has a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Western Michigan University, a Bachelor’s Degree in Fire Safety Engineering and Technology from the University of Cincinnati, and an Associate’s Degree in Fire Science from the Community College of the Air Force. He is a 1998 graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program, a 1999 graduate of the Massachusetts Fire Academy’s Chief Fire Officer Program and was one of the first 17 Designated Chief Fire Officers in 2000. He was re-designated as CFO in 2003, 2006, 2009, 2012 and 2015. He was the recipient of the 2000 and 2008 International Association of Fire Chiefs Benjamin Franklin Departmental Leadership Award.

Designees and Departments

Roanoke (VA) Achieves ISO Class 1 Rating

Consistent with its achievement in accreditation, the Roanoke fire department just received a designation that only 132 departments in the nation have. In early December, 2015, the department learned that they have been rated by Insurance Services Office Incorporated as a Class 1 fire protection service. Only five cities in Virginia have that rating. Fire Chief David Hoback says this new distinction “could leave residents and business owners with more money in their pockets.” “It can translate into lower insurance costs, and lower progression of increases for insurance.” “When we went from a 3 to a 2, that was really big for the residential community, but now going from a 2 to a 1, it’s really going to have an impact on commercial insurance,” explained Hoback.

Dr. Mark Gamber 

Dr. Mark Gamber, CEMSO, Plano Fire-Rescue, was named the 2015 Texas EMS Medical Director of the Year by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Dr. Gamber is a graduate of Texas A&M University and the University of North Texas Health Science Center, and has practiced Emergency Medicine in North Texas for 12 years and has served as Plano Fire-Rescue’s EMS Medical Director since October 2007. He has led the department in several innovative programs including several to increase the survival of cardiac arrest patients. Programs such as induced hypothermia, Hands-Only CPR training, AED placement and training, and several cardiac prehospital trial studies have increased Plano’s cardiac arrest survival rate to better than double the national average. Dr. Gamber is board certified in both Emergency Medicine and Emergency Medical Services. In 2010, Dr. Gamber became the first physician to obtain the Center for Public Safety Excellence’s Chief EMS Officer designation. In addition to Plano Fire-Rescue, Dr. Gamber serves as the Medical Director for the cities of Frisco, Rowlett and Murphy.

5 Great Reasons to Attend The 2016 CPSE Excellence Conference

1. The best, most affordable bundle of programs related to agency accreditation, professional credentialing and leadership topics

2. Outstanding networking opportunities: hosted lunches, a networking reception and a fundraising reception on behalf of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.

3. Observe the March hearings of the Commission on Fire Accreditation International. Learn first-hand the issues that the Commission reviews and discusses with agencies seeking international accreditation.

4. See demonstrations of the latest software, geospatial and technical tools for gathering and utilizing data to improve your department’s operations.

5. Enjoy the sun and warmth of a beautiful Florida resort location in March. 

There are many more reasons to make plans now to attend the 2016 Excellence Conference. Register today!


Upcoming CPSE Workshops

CPSE has several workshops scheduled for the next few months. Register today to reserve your seat at the workshop that meets your needs. Please pass these dates and locations on to your colleagues at adjacent fire departments to help us promote attendance at all workshops.

For course details and registration, go to: www.cpse.org/news/upcoming-workshops-events.aspx.

January 11, 2016
Data Analysis & Presentation
Charlotte, NC

January 13, 2016
Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Southlake, TX

January 20, 2016
CFAI Peer Assessor Workshop – January 2016

January 25, 2016
DOD Only:Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Fort Detrick, MD

January 28, 2016
Exceeding Customer Expectations
Apache Junction, AZ

February 03, 2016
DOD ONLY: Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Gulfport, MS

February 09, 2016
Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Cincinnati, OH

February 10, 2016
Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Charleston, SC

March 28, 2016
Data Analysis & Presentation
Parris Island, SC

March 29, 2016
Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Loveland, CO

March 30, 2016
Quality Improvement Through Accreditation
Dubuque, IA