Lieutenants Thomas Frederick and Adrian Smith were each presented a Patriotic Employer Award from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) this week.
The ESGR is a volunteer organization within the U.S. Department of Defense that encourages all employers to support and value the employment and military service of members of the National Guard and Reserve.
Lts. Frederick and Smith were nominated by firefighter/paramedic Ben Lardie, a member of the U.S. military since 2002, in honor of their ongoing support as Lardie and fellow Station 8 firefighter Ty Stebbins continue to actively serve.
While in the MFD Recruit Academy (Class 3), Firefighter Stebbins, a member of the Wisconsin Air National Guard, was deployed to Japan for a four-month assignment. He missed his graduation but was sworn in by the Police and Fire Commission upon his return. Then, under the leadership and guidance of his lieutenants at Station 8, he received the necessary training to bring him up to speed with his peers from the Academy.
Firefighter/Paramedic Lardie has also been called away for military duty multiple times during his career at the MFD. He’s grateful to the lieutenants for ensuring each return to the firehouse is seamless and supportive.
Last year, Lardie organized the MFD's first-ever Military Service Member Open House, a special event held at Station 8 aimed at recruiting active and retired military service members to the fire department. It was possible thanks to the backing of Lts. Frederick and Smith and Fire Chief Steven Davis.
Recruit Class 5 is now underway. In this class of nineteen firefighter recruits, seven individuals have a military background, and two say they attended last year's Military Service Member Open House. The department saw an overall increase in the number of military service members who applied to become firefighters.
The Madison Fire Department remains committed to employing and providing a supportive work environment for members of our U.S. military.
Pictured: Fire Chief Steven Davis, Firefighter Ty Stebbins, Firefighter/Paramedic Ben Lardie, Lt. Thomas Frederick, and Jeff Unger of ESGR (Not pictured: Lt. Adrian Smith)