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Administrator Ernest Mitchell Thanks the IAFC

While this letter (pdf) is addressed to me, it's really for all of you—the 12,000 members of the IAFC. 

January 18, 2017

John Sinclair, President & Chair of the Board
International Association of Fire Chiefs
4025 Fair Ridge Drive
Fairfax, VA 22033

Dear Chief,

In the coming days I will be stepping down as the United States Fire Administrator. Since 2011, it has been my honor to serve President Barack Obama, Federal Emergency Management Administrator Craig Fugate and the firefighters and fire service organizations of our great nation.

Together we have taken significant steps towards the higher presence of residential sprinklers, starting with the installation of residential sprinklers in all FEMA Manufactured Housing Units. Together we have taken significant steps in the education and acceptance of Community Risk Reduction. Together, we have raised the understanding throughout FEMA, DHS and the entire federal government to the value of firefighters and the all-hazard role they play in each and every community. Together, we have accomplished significant gains in all areas of firefighter safety both on the fire ground and in areas such as traffic safety, cancer and suicide prevention. And unfortunately we have stood together through tough times. West, Texas and Prescott, Arizona will always serve as a reminder to me as to the dangers and courageous actions of all firefighters and emergency medical technicians. In summary, together we have made this nation safer than we began.

These accomplishments would not have been possible without your support and the dedication of all members of your organization. As I conclude my tenure, I seek the words to express the depth of my gratitude and unwavering respect for your leadership and your membership. Without your support, these accomplishments would not have been realized. There is still much to do ahead to support the nation of firefighters. I will continue to contribute to the best of my abilities to enhance the delivery of fire, EMS and all hazard services by our nation's fire services.

I most respectfully than you for your support, advice and contributions during my tenure as United States Fire Administrator. As I look forward to our future discussions, may you and your members have a very safe, healthy and wonderful 2017.


Ernest Mitchell
United States Fire Administration

Posted by Chief John Sinclair, IAFC President and Chairman of the Board

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