Thursday, July 28, 2011
Fire station receives award
By SUE WATSON
The Holly Springs Board of Aldermen learned June 21 that the city fire department has received the prestigious World Safety Organization award. The award was presented to firemen in Tunica July 18 during the WSO banquet at Sam’s Town.
The award for WSO Concerned Organization came after the department was nominated for recognition by alderman Calvin James, who did the research that brought recognition to the department. Only members of WSO may nominate someone for an award. James has been an affiliate member of WSO since 2006.
James has attended two elected officials fire academies and alderman Harvey Payne has attended one.
James cited low numbers of fire-related and accident-related fatalities in 2010 based on the intensity and quantity of training at the department - a total of 1,160 hours of professional training from the state fire academy. He also cited the city’s superior rating that helps keep insurance premiums low in the fire district.
He esteemed fire chief Kenny Holbrook in his nomination, citing Holbrook’s people-oriented approach to leadership, his easygoing style and his effectiveness as a team player.
“He is an incredibly courteous and empathetic leader who is fair-minded, honest and extremely trustworthy,” James wrote. “I am extremely grateful for Chief Holbrook’s perseverance by ensuring our firefighters are properly trained as well as acquire the most updated training as it becomes available.”
Two Concerned Organizations Awards are given each year to the association or agency with an above-average support for safety, the environment and movement. The award supports actively contributing to the protection of people, property, resources and the environment through innovative programs and with distinctive purpose and goals to enhance the safety awareness.
“We were one of 16 recipients of international awards,” Holbrook said. “The other award in our category was given to the Missiouri Public Safety Center/Highway Patrol. So we were ranked right there with a state highway patrol in this category.”
People receiving awards were from areas as far away as Taiwan, California, Australia, W. Virginia, and Texas.
“So, we were there with some high-calibur recipients which is a good testament to our department and the city,” Holbrook said. “We thank the board of aldermen and the mayor for backing our department with funds and other support to allow us to carry out our safety programs. We especially thank Alderman James for recognition. We were selected from organizations all over the world. That’s a pretty big deal.”
WSO members are right in the daily operations of the safety divisions of large corporations and companies, such as LAX Airport.
“To be recognized by our peers is an quite an honor – very prestigious,” Holbrook said. “Safety is our job. I’m glad someone took notice. It says a lot.”
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