National Wildfire Mitigation Awards
Two National Wildfire Mitigation Awards Received in Southwest Colorado
FireWise of Southwest Colorado is pleased to announce that Rebecca Samulski, FireWise Assistant Director, and Jim Tencza, Neighborhood Ambassador for Timberdale Ranch in La Plata County, are recipients of national Wildfire Mitigation Awards. Established in 2014, the awards are the highest commendation for the innovation and leadership displayed by individuals and organizations committed to wildfire preparedness and mitigation.
Recognizing the comprehensive challenge posed by wildfires, these awards commend the outstanding dedication to wildfire preparedness and safety across a broad spectrum of activities and among a variety of individuals and organizations. By honoring their achievements, the award sponsors also seek to increase public recognition and awareness of the value of wildfire mitigation efforts.
“These outstanding individuals are truly embracing the concept of creating fire adapted communities,” said Pam Wilson, Executive Director for FireWise of Southwest Colorado.
In 2015, Rebecca started the Dolores Watershed and Resilient Forest (DWARF) Collaborative in Montezuma County to reduce the risk of wildfires impacting McPhee Reservoir. Jim has shown strong leadership in his community by promoting development of a Community Wildfire Protection Plan, coordinating defensible space projects over the past four years and instigating the first cross-boundary treatment onto private lands that adjoin Timberdale Ranch.
Of the fourteen national awardees, three were from Colorado and two from southwest Colorado. Awards will be presented at the IAFC Wildland-Urban Interface Conference (WUI) in Reno, Nevada on March 22, 2016 and FireWise of Southwest Colorado will honor the local recipients at their March meeting.
Wildfire Mitigation Awards are jointly sponsored by the National Association of State Foresters (NASF), the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and the USDA Forest Service (USFS).