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Firefighting Awards

WA Fire and Emergency Services Awards 2021

Firefighting category winners

Western Australian volunteer and career firefighters protect over two million square kilometres of land and structures. The annual Firefighting Awards recognise the outstanding efforts of our volunteer and career firefighters who have made a significant contribution and demonstrated a high level of dedication and commitment to the volunteer fire services.

Congratulations to the winners:

Youth Achievement Award

  • Jay Dwyer, Quinns Rock Bush Fire Brigade

Once Jay Dwyer joined the Quinns Rocks Bush Fire Brigade he quickly became a leader. He most recently shared his knowledge with cadets as Junior Instructor at the 2021 DFES State Camp. When he’s not guiding and mentoring, he’s fundraising, attending events and fighting fires, including protecting his community from Red Gully. Jay is leading cadets to their potential, while building a limitless future for himself.

Team Achievement Award

  • Kalbarri Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service

Despite Cyclone Seroja being radically different from what Kalbarri VFRS covers, the brigade stepped up with their local knowledge, personal relationships, and tireless work ethic to help the community recover in every way they could.

Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service Award

  • Sheree Lowe, Merredin Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service

Everyone has their own unique strengths and Sheree Lowe is determined to stop the structural stacks against women who want to become firefighters. Her Ladies’ Day initiative creates a safe space for women to try new skills, while her child minder program allows women to become involved earlier in their lives. Both initiatives have led the brigade to triple its female members.

Volunteer Fire and Emergency Service Award

  • Simone Conklin, Eucla Volunteer Fire and Emergency Services

“What if?” is a question Simone Conklin constantly asks while she drives to incidents, up to 300km from Eucla. In going the distance for 18 years, often with little communication in one of the most remote VFES units in WA, Simone has realised her immense capabilities. She’s more than a mother and grandmother, she’s a role model for her granddaughter, as she passes her knowledge on to the next generation.

Murray Lang Bush Fire Service of WA Award

  • James Taylor, Broome Regional Bush Fire Brigade

Making the most of community James Taylor wants brigade members to feel pride in their town, work and team. When he joined a decade ago, he made it his purpose to bring more professionalism to what the brigade does. He’s since formalised the building, set up training processes and school visits to discuss bushfire awareness.

Career Fire and Rescue Service Award

  • Rik Fennell, Joondalup Fire and Rescue Service

Rik Fennell believes opportunities are about timing and patience. Thirteen years into his firefighting career, his moment came to create change. He recognised a human need to ensure every volunteer firefighter felt seen and heard through the learning process. He got people away from PowerPoints and on to trucks to radically change the way breathing apparatus training is delivered.


Previous Award Recipients

Team Achievement Award
Roleystone Volunteer Fire Brigade (2020)
Kalgoorlie VFRS (2019)
Tom Price Bush Fire Brigade/Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service Brigade (2018)
Argyle Irishtown Bush Fire Brigade (2017)

WA Career Fire and Rescue Service Award
Senior Firefighter Michael Hatfield (2020)
Gregory Henry, Senior Firefighter (2019)
Philip Brandrett, District Officer, Lower South West Regional Office (2018)
Andrew Seuren, Regional Operations Support Officer, South Coastal (2017)
Stuart Parks, Midland Career Fire and Rescue (2016)
Martin Cable, Station Officer Kalgoorlie Fire Station (2015)

Youth Achievement Award
Jordan McIntosh, Bunbury BFB (2020)
Jarred Kowal, Bunbury BFB (2019)
Callum O’Connell, Tom Price Emergency Services Cadet Corp (2018)
Struan Graham, Wanneroo Central Bush Fire Brigade (2016)
Matthew Holland, Witchcliffe Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service and Bush Fire Service (2015)
Kellie Bullen, Broome Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service (2014)

Western Australian Fire and Emergency Services Award
No nominations received for this category in 2020
Hubertus Vink, Halls Creek VFES (2019)
Chris Unstead, Bullsbrook Volunteer Fire and Emergency Service Brigade (2018)
Richard Oman, Fitzroy Crossing Volunteer Fire and Emergency Service (2017)
Jack Jones, Onslow Volunteer Emergency Services Unit (2016)
Frazer McGregor & Sandra Lymbery, Coral Bay Volunteer Fire and Emergency Service (2015)

WA Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service Award
Melanie McGoldrick, Lancelin VFRS (2020)
Phillip Leach, Broome VFRS (2019)
Gyula Bogar, Boyup Brook Volunteer Fire and Rescue Brigade (2018)
Warren Schofield, Derby Fire and Rescue Service (2017)
Anthony Crudeli, Mullewa Fire and Rescue Service (2016)
Deirdre Marchese, Kambalda Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service (2015)

Murray Lang Bush Fire Service of WA Award
Murray McGregor, Northam Central and Irishtown BFB’s (2020)
Ted Rasktrick, Borholm Bush Fire Brigade (2019)
Bradley Warr, Dwellingup Bush Fire Brigade (2018)
Will Carmody, Cascade Bush Fire Brigade (2017)
Blake Halford, Gibson Bush Fire Brigade (2016)
Terri Kowal, Bunbury Bush Fire Brigade (2015)

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