Washington Fire Chiefs News

Washington Fire Chiefs Welcome New Executive Director

Published on Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Washington Fire Chiefs Welcome New Executive Director

Chief Wayne Senter is Selected as the Washington Fire Chiefs New Executive Director

The Washington Fire Chiefs (WFC) Board of Directors voted unanimously to appoint South Kitsap Fire Chief Wayne Senter as their next executive director. Senter will replace Mike Brown, who has served as the WFC executive director since 2005.

“Chief Senter is a proven leader with more than three decades of fire service experience in many Washington communities,” said Murray Gordon, Fire Chief for the city of Everett and President of the WFC board. “Chief Senter stood out during our selection process, and we are pleased to welcome him on board.”

Senter began his new job on Jan. 1, 2014. As Executive Director he will continue to build upon the WFC’s mission to “Serve, Educate, and Lead”.  The role includes advocating for fire service and public safety legislative issues on behalf of 2,500 WFC members and all 487 fire departments throughout Washington State. Senter will also oversee annual association conferences and training workshops, and provide assistance to local public safety agencies.

“The WFC has played an important advocacy and education role for nearly 90 years,” said Senter. “I’m honored to be a part of this organization and to represent my fellow firefighters as we work on the issues that affect our work and the safety of our citizens.”

Senter has led South Kitsap Fire Rescue for 16 years. He previously served as Fire Marshal for the city of Auburn, where he began his career as a firefighter and EMT in 1979.

In addition to his work responsibilities, Senter also contributes to national and international fire organizations and community groups. He has served as president of the WFC Board of Directors, Kitsap County Fire Chiefs and Port Orchard Rotary International Club.

He also represented the International Association of Fire Chiefs on the Center for Public Safety Excellence Board. Senter was named 2013 Fire Chief of the Year by the WFC and was named the 2013 Citizen of the Year by Kitsap County Fire Commissioners Association.

Brown, who served as Executive Director for nine years, announced his retirement in September.

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Memorial Information for David R Hiltwein

David Hiltwein passed away Sunday, February 22, 2015 in Kennewick, WA as the result of Scleroderma-related complications. David was born on February 26, 1952 in Pasco, WA to Leo Hiltwein and Viola Hiltwein and lived in Kennewick his entire life. He graduated from both Kennewick High School and Columbia Basin College. He proudly served as a Hanford Fire Fighter and EMT for 37 years (1974-2011). He was also a volunteer Fire Fighter with Benton County Fire District #1 for 31 years (1971-2002). He was a loyal supporter of his Union IAFF Local 1-24, where he served as the Vice President for many years.

David is remembered for his compassion, sense of humor, practical jokes, strong work ethic, teaching abilities, and steel trap memory. He loved hunting, fishing, reading, crossword puzzles, knife making, riding his Harley Davidson, attending car shows, and burning rubber in his 1967 EI Camino. He was a dedicated fan of the Seattle Seahawks and loved watching and attending football games with his friends and family...

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2015 Grant/Scholarship Application

Washington Fire Administrative Support (WFAS) recognizes that some departments do not have the budget available for their administrative staff to attend section functions.  Knowing the benefits of continuing education, increasing workplace proficiency and the value of network sharing, we have created a scholarship fund to assist these individuals. Money collected from the raffle at our annual conference each year funds this program.  The scholarship is designed to cover, or assist with, registration fees and/or travel & lodging costs for the recipients to attend section functions.

The following is a guideline for disbursement of these funds:

  1. Interested WFAS members shall fill out the application and forward it to the Scholarship Chair.
  2. The application shall include a written summary as to the reason for the request.
  3. Priority for funds usage will be toward registration; if scholarship funds are still available after grants are made, funds will be applied to other conference costs, ie. lodging, travel expenses, etc, dependent upon need and availability. 
  4. The Chair will appoint a committee to review all applications and select an applicant(s) to receive scholarship funds.
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WFC Fire Chief Dan Packer Fire Chief of the Year Award Nominations

It's that time of the year again for Washington Fire Chiefs (WFC) members to consider their peers for nomination for the WFC "Chief Dan Packer Fire Chief of the Year Award".

Nominations for the special award may be submitted by any WFC member or Section member in good standing, including a City or County elected official, an administrator or a fire commissioner.  Nominations must be submitted by April 1st of this year....

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March 13, 2015 Board Meeting Update

The Washington Fire Mechanics recently held a board meeting at Camano Fire’s station 3 on Camano Island. We are now posting TSB’s via social media as they become available, but limited to a maximum of one post per week. This is a brief summary of the discussions: The conference center is secured for the upcoming annual workshop. Jim Juneau will be our keynote speaker this year and provide a class as well. Classes are starting to shape up and provide another year with even more selection for returning mechanics. Financial support has been secured from Kent Bruce to sponsor our website. Kenworth Northwest and Gray lifts will be added to the vendor show this year as well. Any interested vendors should contact a member of the board for more information. This year’s class schedule change should be a nice change of pace and allow events to flow more smoothly...

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Fire chiefs demand oil train disaster plans from BNSF Railroad

The Washington Fire Chiefs, in a pointed letter, have asked the BNSF Railroad to turn over “Worst Case Scenarios” for an oil train accident as well as “Comprehensive Emergency Response Plans” for high hazard flammable trains.

The letter comes as three oil trains pass through Seattle each day en route to northern Puget Sound refineries. Railroads now transport one-tenth of U.S. crude oil output — approximately 1.1 million barrels a day.“What is the potential impact of a crude oil disaster in Washington communities?” the chiefs want to know.

Writing to BNSF CEO Matthew Rose, the fire chiefs said Seattle “narrowly missed disaster” last July when three tanker cars derailed at a rail yard under the Magnolia Bridge.

The train was going only 5 mph, but the cars that derailed were carrying 27,000 gallons of Bakken crude oil from North Dakota.

Signed by Washington Fire Chiefs Executive Director Wayne Senter, the letter sounded a note of frustration, telling Rose...

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Take It Home and Train Others

On February 25th, 2015 the Training, Safety and Officer’s section wrapped up another successful annual conference held in Yakima, WA.  The event was a great success solely because of the hard work put in by the Board members and their spouses from around the state who volunteered their time to make it happen.  And another round of ‘Thank You’ is necessary for all the staff at the Washington Fire Chief’s office.  There were 5 full days of classes covering topics of leadership, instructions, driver safety, Train-the-Trainers and more!  It was great to see so many departments represented and the networking that took place is always an added benefit. 

Chief Rick Lasky (Ret.) was our keynote speaker and did a fantastic job.  If you have ever heard Chief Lasky speak or if you have read his book Pride and Ownership then you can imagine the lasting impression he left with all of us.  In his general session presentation he delivered a powerful historical overview of the fire service and touched on why we as a fire service have come to do things the way we do.  From code enforcement changes to safety practices developed Chief Lasky relayed real life examples, which have killed civilians and firefighters, and the resulting changes that emerged following these tragic events.  As the class was entitled, it truly was something that They Should Be Teaching This on the First Day of the Academy...

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