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About This Webinar

How does it feel to be a member of your department? Have you created an open, accepting, rewarding and innovative organizational climate? Do members look forward to coming to the station? In this webinar, the presenters will discuss these and other issues that you, as a significant leader in your organization, influence and which have an impact on retention and recruiting of volunteers. Authority figures create a positive and proactive positive psychological climate by designing work activities that acknowledge the members’ needs.

When: Tuesday, June 25, 2024 · 4:00 p.m. · Eastern Time (US & Canada)
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Language: English
Who can attend? Everyone
Dial-in available? (listen only): Yes
Dial-in Number: Please register for this Webinar to view the dial-in info.
Featured Presenters
Webinar hosting presenter
Fire Chief, German Township Fire Department (Ret.)
John M. Buckman III served as a German Township Fire Chief managing volunteers for 35 years. He is most proud of the title “pawpaw.” Leslie his wife has spent 29 years together. He currently serves as Education Coordinator for the International Association of Fire Chief Volunteer and Combination Officers Section. He is the Director of Government and Regional Outreach for IamResponding. He served as the Indiana Fire Academy Director for 15 years. He served as President of the International Association of Fire Chief in 2001-2002.

He has authored over 150 articles in various publications. In 1996 he was selected by Fire Chief Magazine as Fire Chief of the Year in 1996. He has published 4 books and 7 photography books. He received the Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels Meritorious Service Award. The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2022 he received the Jimmy Seavey Health and Wellness award presented by the NVFC. and the Presidents Award from the International Society of Fire Service Instructors.

He was one of the founders of the Volunteer and Combination Officer Section (VCOS) and the National Fire Academy Alumni Association. He has contributed to several “ribbon reports” published by the VCOS. He was asked to be one of the editors for the original Lavender Ribbon Report published by the VCOS and NVFC in 2019. In 2021 he along with Brian McQueen spearheaded the update for the Lavender Ribbon Report. He is a principal author of the Yellow Ribbon Report and the updated updated Training Volunteers white paper published by the National Volunteer Fire Council and the Volunteer and Combination Officers Section.
Webinar hosting presenter
Fire Chief, Duck Fire Department (NC), IAFC Past President
Chief Donna Black has been active in the fire service for over 20 years. She began her career in 1997 as a volunteer, earning her way through the ranks (as both a paid and volunteer firefighter), culminating in 2006 when she was selected as the fire chief for the Town of Duck.

Chief Black received her Bachelor of Science degree from Ithaca College and went on to obtain her Master of Arts from the University of Georgia.

She graduated the National Fire Academy's Executive Fire Officer (EFO) Program in 2011. While attending the EFO program, her study focused on evaluating and improving the operations of the Duck Fire Department. After collaborating with the town manager, and educating both the town council and community about fire operations, Chief Black justified the necessity of procuring career firefighter positions. These proactive changes increased the level of service for the town and shaped the Duck Fire Department into a thriving combination department.

Chief Black holds a post-graduate Certificate in Community Preparedness & Disaster Management from the Gillings School of Public Health at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and authored the Town of Duck’s Emergency Operations Plan. She currently holds the Chief Fire Officer (CFO) designation.

Chief Black has served on several boards including the Volunteer Combination Officers Section, Council for Future Volunteer Firefighters (vice chairperson) and FRI Program Planning Committee. Most recently Chief Black was chosen to co-chair the Women Fire Chiefs Council. She continues to advocate for highly effective and inclusive volunteer and combination fire departments.
Webinar hosting presenter
Fire Chief, City of Inver Grove Heights (MN)
In 2007, the city of Inver Grove Heights, MN, hired Judy Thill as the first full-time fire chief to lead the department. Thill started her 35-year fire service career in 1989 as a paid-on-call firefighter with the Eagan, MN, Fire Department while also working as safety manager for Northwest Airlines. She was hired full time by the Maple Grove, MN, Fire-Rescue Department in 1996, serving as deputy chief for 11 years while continuing with Eagan as an on-call firefighter. Thill holds a Bachelor of Science degree in safety management and has completed all coursework toward a master’s degree in business administration. She received full scholarships to attend Harvard University’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government program and the Naval Postgraduate School’s Executive Leaders program at the Center for Defense and Homeland Security. Thill is a member of Firehouse Magazine’s Editorial Advisory Board and of the National Volunteer Fire Council Board of Directors. She received the International Association of Fire Chiefs VCOS John M. Buckman III Leadership Award and the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association Fire Officer of the Year Award.
Webinar hosting presenter
Executive Director, Maryland State Firemen's Association
Kate Loveless is the Executive Director Maryland State Firemen’s Association. Kate has proudly served as a volunteer in the fire and EMS service for almost 20 years, both operationally and administratively.
Kate’s fire service journey began in her hometown of Freeport, New York, where she served in both Firefighting and EMS roles until moving to Maryland in 2015.
Kate immediately became immersed in Maryland’s fire and EMS system, becoming a nationally registered EMT while navigating through one of the largest combination departments in the United States - Prince George’s County, Maryland. Kate served as both a volunteer and paid volunteer recruiter In Prince George’s County until 2018 when she moved into her current role as the State Association’s Executive Director.
Kate continues to serve as a volunteer, focusing on recruitment, retention, and social media platforms for a rural fire and EMS department in Queen Anne’s County, Maryland.
Kate’s passions within the fire service are the recruitment and retention of volunteers both locally and state-wide, mentorship, and leadership development.
Webinar hosting presenter
Captain, Baltimore County Fire Department
Terri Reid began volunteering with the Baltimore County (MD) Fire Department as an emergency medical technician basic in 1996. In 2003, she became a career EMT-B of the Baltimore County Fire Department. Her additional training includes National Registry EMT-P, Hazardous Material Technician, Hazardous Materials Incident Commander, Incident Safety Officer, and Firefighter II.
Hosted By
International Association of Fire Chiefs webinar platform hosts What is the Motivational Climate in Your Department?
The International Association of Fire Chiefs represents the leadership of over 1.2 million firefighters and emergency responders. IAFC members are the world's leading experts in firefighting, emergency medical services, terrorism response, hazardous materials spills, natural disasters, search and rescue, and public safety legislation. Since 1873, the IAFC has provided a forum for its members to exchange ideas and uncover the latest products and services available to first responders.