OFPD approves hiring of nine firefighters

The Orland Fire Protection District approves hiring of nine firefighters; presents Citizens Award and receives recognition from Muscular Dystrophy Association at board meeting

OFPD President Jim Hickey (left) joins Engineer Robert Griffin (center) and Fire Chief Ken Brucki in accepting the Golden Boot Award for raising a record $25,000 to fight Muscular Dystrophy. (Photo courtesy OFPD)

OFPD President Jim Hickey (left) joins Engineer Robert Griffin (center) and Fire Chief Ken Brucki in accepting the Golden Boot Award for raising a record $25,000 to fight Muscular Dystrophy. (Photo courtesy OFPD)

The Orland Fire Protection District (OFPD) board of trustees voted Tuesday to approve the hiring of nine firefighters. The proposed hirings will be supervised by the OFPD Board of Fire Commissioners who will review and select candidates from the existing hiring eligibility list.

Last year, the board authorized the hiring of 10 firefighters who are scheduled to complete their one-year training on May 10th.

Fire Chief Ken Brucki said the proposed new hires will fill vacancies created by the retirement of nine veteran firefighters over the past few months. The 10 firefighters hired last year also filled vacancies created by retirements.

The board voted three to one to approve the motion by OFPD Board President Jim Hickey. Hickey, Chris Evoy and Jayne Schirmacher voted yes and Blair Rhode voted no. Trustee John Brudnak had an excused absence from the meeting.

OFPD President Jim Hickey (left)  joins Fire Chief Ken Brucki (right) to Kayla Kutinac, Heather Elledge and Zoe Spada. (Photo courtesy OFPD)

OFPD President Jim Hickey (left) joins Fire Chief Ken Brucki (right) to Kayla Kutinac, Heather Elledge and Zoe Spada. (Photo courtesy OFPD)

In other business, the OFPD Board presented the Citizens Life Saving Award, named in honor of the late Battalion Chief William Bonnar Sr., to three individuals who assisted in an emergency situation at the Palos Health & Fitness Center on Jan. 25, 2015. Recognized with the CLSA were Kayla Kutinac, Heather Elledge and Zoe Spada.

Also, the Muscular Dystrophy Association presented its Golden Boot Award to the Orland Fire Protection District and its firefighters who, MSA officials said, raised more than $25,000 this past year to fight Muscular Dystrophy, the highest amount raised in Chicagoland’s South Suburbs. The MDA raised $24 million nationwide with $1 million coming just from Illinois, officials said. During the past seven years, the OFPD has helped raise more than $77,000 to help the MDA fund research and provide programs to assist children with Muscular Dystrophy and to fund research centers around the country.

“Every year, the firefighters volunteer to raise funds to fight Muscular Dystrophy and we are very proud of them,” Hickey said.

Fundraising for the MDA has been spearheaded by the Firefighters Union 2754. Union representative and OFPD Engineer Robert Griffin accepted the Golden Boot Award from the Muscular Dystrophy Association on behalf of the Orland Fire Protection District.

“The Fire District is very proud to participate in that effort and we applaud the members of FireFighters Union 2754 and Engineer Robert Griffin who has led this effort,” Brucki said. “They have done a phenomenal job for a very worthy cause and we applaud them for their efforts.”

Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania

Blogger, Columnist at Illinois News Network Online
Ray Hanania is senior blogger for the Illinois News Network news site. He is an award winning former Chicago City Hall political reporter and columnist who covered the beat from 1976 through 1992 (From Mayor Daley to Mayor Daley). And, Hanania is a stubborn and loud critic of the biased mainstream American news media.

Hanania Chicago political beats and Chicago City Hall at the Daily Southtown Newspapers (1976-1985) and the Chicago Sun-Times (1985-1992). He published the The Villager Community Newspapers covering 12 Southwest suburban regions (1993-1997). Hanania also hosted live political news radio talkshows on WLS AM (1980 - 1991), and also on WBBM FM, WLUP FM, WSBC AM in Chicago, and WNZK AM in Detroit.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

Hanania’s writings have been published in newspapers around the world. He currently is syndicated through Creators Syndicate. He has written for the Jerusalem Post, YNetNews.com, Newsday in New York, the Orlando Sentinel, the Houston Chronicle, The Daily Star of Lebanon, the News of the World in London, the Daily Yomimuri in Tokyo, Chicago Magazine, the Arlington Heights Daily Herald, The Saudi Gazette, the Arab News in Jeddah, and Aramco Magazine.

Hanania's Chicagoland columns are published in the Southwest News-Herald, the Des Plaines Valley News, the Regional News and the Palos Reporter newspapers.

He is President/CEO of Urban Strategies Group media and public affairs consulting which has clients in Illinois, Florida, Michigan and Washington D.C.

His personal website is www.TheMediaOasis.com. Email him at: [email protected]
Ray Hanania

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