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State Fire Marshal Sink Honors Florida Firefighters during Firefighter Appreciation Week


CONTACT: Kevin Cate, (850) 413-2842
TALLAHASSEE—Florida CFO and State Fire Marshal Alex Sink honored Florida firefighters in a ceremony at the Florida Cabinet today, recognizing April 11-17, 2010, as Florida Firefighter Appreciation Week. 
“We all know it takes a special person to fill the boots of a firefighter,” said CFO Sink. “All of our firefighters go above and beyond the call of duty, risking their lives every day to protect Floridians. I encourage all Floridians to take a moment during this special week to thank our firefighters for their service.”
Yesterday, Florida’s finest firefighters were honored with Fire Service Awards.  Fire Service Awards are coordinated through CFO Sink’s State Fire Marshal Office annually and are sponsored by one or more of the following fire-service related organizations: the Florida Joint Council of Fire & Emergency Services, the Fire Training Director’s Association, the Florida State Firefighters Association, the Fire Chiefs’ Association, the Fire Marshal and Inspectors Association, the Professional Firefighters Association and the Emergency Preparedness Association.
CFO Sink remembered Florida’s fallen firefighters at a ceremonial ‘last call’ bell-ringing in Florida’s Capitol this morning, and later recognized the following individuals and one training center with a Fire Service Award at the Cabinet meeting today:
Volunteer Firefighter of the Year—Steve Robertson, West Sebring Volunteer Fire Rescue
Fire Marshal of the Year— Kerry Barnett, Zephyrhills Fire Rescue
Florida Emergency Preparedness Manager of the Year – David Perez, Miami Dade County

Florida Fire Investigator of the Year— John Farill, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue
Florida Fire Inspector of the Year—Zimmerman King “ZK” Roberts, Florida State Fire Marshal

Florida Fire Chief of the Year— Richard Talbert, South Walton Fire Department

Florida Fire Instructor of the Year— Patrick Kelly, Boca Raton Fire Rescue

Florida Fire Investigator of the Year (Department) – George Holcomb, Bureau of Fire and Arson Investigations

Florida Professional Firefighter of the Year— Walter Dix, Broward Fire Academy

Florida Forestry Firefighter of the Year— Thom Coletti, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Training Center of the Year— Indian River State College
During Florida Firefighter Appreciation Week, Florida’s firefighters and paramedics are also recognized for their fund raising efforts on behalf of the Muscular Dystrophy Association.  Last year, Florida’s firefighters raised more than $2 million for the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) during their annual “Fill the Boot” campaign, ranking second in the nation and making them MDA’s largest single source of giving in Florida.
In addition to the Fire Service Awards, CFO Sink recognized Bob Carver, President of Florida Professional Firefighters, with a Cabinet resolution. Carver is retiring after 30 years of advocating for firefighters’ rights in Florida.
As a statewide elected officer of the Florida Cabinet, CFO Alex Sink oversees the Department of Financial Services.  A successful business leader with nearly three decades of experience in the private sector, Sink is serving her first term as Florida's CFO.  CFO Sink's priorities include using her business experience to cut wasteful spending, holding government accountable to Florida’s taxpayers, and cracking down on financial and insurance fraud.