The National Fire Protection Association awards James M. Shannon Advocacy Medal to Paul D. Martin, Retired Deputy State Fire Administrator

Paul MartinJune 15, 2020The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) announced Paul D. Martin, retired Deputy State Fire Administrator with the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Service’s Office of Fire Prevention and Control, as the winner of the 2019 James M. Shannon Advocacy Medal. Martin has been awarded this year’s medal for his dedication and career-long commitment to fire safety.

The James M. Shannon Advocacy Medal was established in honor of Jim Shannon, who served as NFPA president for 12 years, beginning in 2002. Shannon was known for his tireless advocacy. Under his leadership, NFPA significantly advanced its mission of promoting fire safety and protecting both the general public and members of the fire service alike by proactively working towards key changes that reduce fire loss. He was also a vocal advocate for home fire sprinklers and intensified NFPA’s efforts in support of requirements for this technology.

Martin started his fire service career more than 40 years ago and championed a number of programs and initiatives to reduce loss from fire and other hazards. He is a strong advocate for promoting campus fire safety for both on and off campus, having served as a director of the non-profit Center for Campus Fire Safety for more than 12 years, six of which he served as president of the organization. Because of Martin’s efforts, the state of New York launched a program known as Campus Fire Safety Awareness Day held at dozens of campuses across the State and he is considered the architect of the state’s campus fire safety program.

Martin was also instrumental in New York becoming the first state to pass Fire Safe Cigarette requirements, leading the remaining states to follow the effort to reduce fire deaths from cigarettes.

Additionally, Martin served as co-chair of Prevention, Advocacy, Resource and Data Exchange (PARADE), a program of the United States Fire Administration designed to foster the exchange of fire-related prevention/ protection information and resources among Federal, State, and local levels of government.

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As all of us continue to navigate the evolving situation with COVID-19, NFPA remains committed to supporting you with the resources you need to minimize risk and help prevent loss, injuries, and death from fire, electrical, and other hazards. For information on NFPA’s response to the coronavirus, please visit our webpage.

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Founded in 1896, NFPA is a global self-funded nonprofit organization devoted to eliminating death, injury, property and economic loss due to fire, electrical and related hazards. The association delivers information and knowledge through more than 300 consensus codes and standards, research, training, education, outreach and advocacy; and by partnering with others who share an interest in furthering the NFPA mission. For more information, visit All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed online for free at

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