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The Burleson Fire Department honored some of their own during their annual awards banquet last month.
Firefighter of the Year
Firefighter Steve Burchette took home the Firefighter of the Year honor. Burchette has been an integral part of multiple projects the fire department completed this past year, states his nomination form. He often reported to the station on his days off to coordinate the department’s annual fit and flow testing which directly affects firefighter safety and the department’s ability to stay compliant with Texas Commission on Fire Protection. He also went above and beyond organizing the department’s Personal Protective Equipment room which allows for firefighters to easily and quickly access additional equipment, with the knowledge that it has recently been tested and is ready for use. He also spent hours entering the department’s EMS training records which were integral for the department to begin offering Advanced Life Support services. Firefighter Burchette will mark 15 years with Burleson Fire Department in April of this year.
Rookie of the Year
Firefighter Dennis Koslowsky was awarded the Rookie of the Year honor. Koslowsky’s nomination form states that he demonstrates what every crew wants to see in a rookie firefighter. Koslowsky has known for starting and ending each shift with a positive, can-do attitude. He is always the first person to offer to complete any given assignment and does so with a smile, no matter how hard, or difficult the task is, nor does he ever complain. He demonstrates passion, respect and is sincere with every patient and or citizen he comes in contact with. Koslowsky is also passionate about physical fitness in the department. He offers help in physical training for his co-workers both on and off the clock and suggests ways to eat better. As a rookie, Koslowsky has stepped up to the plate and pushed his fellow firefighters to take better care of themselves. Firefighter Koslowsky began his career with Burleson Fire Department December 19, 2016.
Fire Officer of the Year
Battalion Chief Josh Jacobs took home the award for Fire Officer of the Year. Chief Jacobs is known for his “lead by example” mentality and his strong work ethic, states his nomination form.
In his role of Captain, he took on two new rookie firefighters and a newly promoted Engineer and began the process of educating and mentoring. He ensured every member of the crew knew their assignment and was properly trained in the execution of the task. Chief Jacobs gave his crew tasks that required them to stretch out of their comfort zone and become better as a shift. Through the department’s Community Risk Reduction Initiative the shift was able to educate the community in drowning awareness.
He also was the lead for the fire department’s open house and a major reason the event was a success. Chief Jacobs researched tactics and equipment to streamline the ways we can force entry. Those tactics and training paid off immediately when the shift had to assist the police department on a welfare check at a local residence. Since then, the tactics have been used many times with great success. Chief Jacobs is not satisfied with meeting status quo he wants his team to perform at a high level and always encourages growth. He leads by example in physical fitness, training evolutions, research and implementation of tactics, being a professional while on duty and off. Battalion Chief Jacobs began his career with Burleson Fire Department 14 years ago.
Charles Newby Award
Battalion Chief Casey Davis who received the Charles Newby Award for his dedication and work with the fire department’s EMS division. This year, the department became an Advanced Life Support (ALS) department under the guidance of Captain Davis. He worked countless hours to provide the necessary training for our members. He also worked countless hours with all the stakeholders involved in this process to make it a successful transition. While dealing with all the trials and tribulations that came along with the ALS process, he found enough time to be a great company officer, leading his crew, training his crew, and being a great public servant. Chief Davis pushes every firefighter to do better not only in the EMS field but with fire training and our physical fitness. He has proven to be a great leader and will continue for years to come, states his nomination form.
This award has special meaning to Battalion Chief Davis because 26 years ago his father, Gary Davis, was also awarded this prestigious accolade. Gary Davis was a volunteer firefighter for Burleson and in 1992 was given this honor for rescuing a young boy from a house fire. The young boy had hidden in his closet as flames engulfed the home and Firefighter Davis was able to locate him and bring him to safety.The Burleson Fire Department is honored to have this father and son duo as part of our department. Battalion Chief Davis joined Burleson Fire Department 14 years ago, his father, Gary, was a volunteer with Burleson Fire Department from 1987 to 1996.
The Charles Newby Award recognizes a member that has shown dedication and personal pride and ownership within the Burleson Fire Department.
Firefighter Ben Eason was awarded the Most Training Award. He logged 697 hours of training which resulted in Firefighter Eason receiving multiple new certifications in 2017. Some of those certificates are in swift water rescue, fire inspection, fire investigation, fire instruction and he became a certified driver/aerial operator. Firefighters are mandated to have 258 hours of training a year.
The Busiest Shift The ‘A’ shift at Station 1, located at 828 SW Alsbury Blvd, was recognized as the busiest shift for 2017. This group consist of Lieutenant Jacob Hopps, Engineer Scott Johns and Firefighters Matthew Jefferson and Joshua Smith. The shift alone ran 743 calls out of the 4,423 total calls the department responded to. Burleson Fire personnel work 24 hours and then are off for 48 hours. There are three shifts, ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’.
10 Years of Service
The department also recognized the following staff members for 10 years of service.
Jake Hopps, Lieutenant
Matt Moseley, Lieutenant
Robert Clarkin, Engineer
Eddie Limon, Firefighter