Metro Chiefs meet in Clark County Las Vegas Nevada

May 4, 2015 - The Metropolitan “Metro” Fire Chiefs Association, a section of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) held its 2015 annual conference in Clark County/Las Vegas, Nevada, from April 28-May 2, hosted by Chief Gregory Cassell and the Clark County Fire Department. Approximately 120 Metro chiefs from Australia, Canada, China, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States attended the conference and elected the section’s 2015-2016 officers and board members.

Metro Chiefs Conference - President Chief Ken Block
New Metro Fire Chiefs President Chief Ken

The new officers are:

  • Chief Ken Block, president; Edmonton, Alberta Fire Rescue Services;
  • Chief Rhoda Mae Kerr, vice president; Austin, Texas Fire Department;
  • Chief Maurice Kemp, secretary; Miami, Florida Fire Rescue Department; and
  • Chief Otto Drozd, treasurer; Orange County, Florida Fire Rescue Department.

The new board members are:

  • Chief Jon Hannan, board member; Charlotte, North Carolina Fire Department;
  • Chief (retired) William "Shorty" Bryson, senior board member; Miami and Miami-Dade Florida Fire Rescue Departments;
  • Chief Teresa Deloach-Reed, alternate board member; Oakland, California Fire Department; and,
  • Chief Larry Few, immediate past president; Fulton County, Georgia Fire and Rescue Department.

NFPA President and CEO Jim Pauley issued the oath of office to the new officers and board members.

The Metro Chiefs bestowed the following 2015 Metro Awards:

  • Chief Ken Block was named Fire Chief of the Year;
  • Chief (retired) Luther Fincher, former Chief of the Charlotte Fire Department, received the Lifetime Achievement Award; and,
  • Chief Maurice Kemp received the President’s Award of Distinction.

Dignitaries that addressed the chiefs included: USFA Administrator Chief Ernie Mitchell; IAFC President and Chair of the Board G. Keith Bryant; IAFC CEO and Executive Director Mark Light; IAFF General President Harold Schaitberger; NFPA President and CEO Jim Pauley; Chief Peter Dartford, president of the Chief Fire Officers Association of the United Kingdom; and Tore Eriksson, president of the International Fire and Rescue Association.

A comprehensive education program included updates and presentations on numerous topics, such as Medical Transport, ATF Firearms and Explosives, Fire Behavior Research, Active Shooter, Utilizing Research, Ebola, Community Vulnerability, Career Survival Training, Occupational Illness, Fire Fighter Rehabilitation, and much more. The chiefs also passed resolutions expressing unanimous support for numerous initiatives, such as the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition, the National Fallen Fire Fighters Foundation, the Canadian Fallen Fire Fighters Foundation, among others. 

The 2016 Metro conference will be hosted by Chief Mike DuRee and the Long Beach, California, Fire Department. The conference will be May 12-18 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

The Metropolitan Fire Chiefs (Metro) Association brings together fire chiefs from large metropolitan fire departments to share information and focus on major issues effecting policy changes in the U.S. and abroad. Its members belong to the IAFC and NFPA and are the fire chiefs of jurisdictions with minimum staffing of 350 fully paid career fire fighters. For more information, contact Metro Executive Secretary, Russ Sanders

About the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
NFPA is a worldwide leader in fire, electrical, building, and life safety. The mission of the international nonprofit organization founded in 1896 is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training, and education. NFPA develops more than 300 codes and standards to minimize the possibility and effects of fire and other hazards. All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed at no cost at

Contact: Lorraine Carli, Public Affairs Office: +1 617 984-7275.