Recently, the International Code Council, in partnership with the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) Fire & Life Safety Section, presented the 2021 Excellence in Fire & Life Safety Award to Chief Michael D. O’Brian from the Brighton Area Fire Authority in Michigan. The Excellence in Fire & Life Safety Award honors individuals who have dedicated themselves to saving lives and property through their work on code development, fire prevention practices, and fire service leadership.
Chief Michael O’Brian receives the 2021 Excellence in Fire and Life Safety Award. From left, Chief Kenneth Steubing, president and chief executive officer of the International Association of Fire Chiefs, and fire chief with the Halifax Regional Fire & Emergency in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; Deputy Fire Chief Andy King, chair of the IAFC Fire and Life Safety Section, and fire marshal with the Franklin Fire Department in Franklin, Tennessee; Chief Michael O’Brian, IAFC international director and fire chief with the Brighton Area Fire Department in Brighton, Michigan; and Karl Fippinger, vice president – Fire and Disaster Mitigation at the International Code Council.
O’Brian received the award on May 24, 2022, during the IAFC Fire & Life Safety Section Community Risk Reduction Leadership Conference in Toronto, Canada. Early in his fire service career, Chief O’Brian recognized that strong codes not only help protect communities but also the safety of first responders. He has established himself as a well-known and respected voice in code development within his home state of Michigan and at the national level.
Chief O’Brian leads the Brighton Area Fire Authority where he is responsible for operating five fire stations charged with protecting 74 square miles of community and property across southeast Michigan. He is a past president of the Michigan Association of Fire Chiefs (2014–2018) and currently serves on the IAFC board of directors representing the IAFC’s Fire and Life Safety Section, a position he has held since 2017. Chief O’Brian chaired the International Code Council’s Fire Code Action Committee for the past eight years and served as a member of the Code Council’s Code Correlating Committee since 2017. He is also a past recipient of the Code Council’s Robert W. Gain Fire Prevention Leadership Award.
“Chief O’Brian’s passion, energy, and expertise for fire and life safety have established him as a national leader in fire prevention and code development,” said IAFC Fire and Life Safety Section Chairman Andy King. “We appreciate Chief O’Brian’s contributions to the Fire and Life Safety Section and the ICC code development process.”
See past recipients of the Excellence in Fire & Life Safety Award.