December 2021 Leadership Message From the ISFSI President: Pete Van Dorpe

Holiday greetings my sisters and brothers!

I hope this finds you all enjoying a healthy and meaningful holiday season with those closest to you. While the pandemic continues to challenge us both professionally and personally, I suspect that most of you have found the means and the practices that enable you to reengage with friends and family.

As each year comes to a close, I try to make sure I remind myself and my brothers and sisters in the fire service that we need to make a little bit of time and effort to take care of ourselves. The holidays often add a good deal of stress to our lives on top of what we experience daily in the service to our communities. Be mindful of the effect it can have on you and those dear to you. Allow yourself a break. Give in to the opportunities around you to experience some joy. BE merry for crying out loud!


Our second virtual conference will be held this February. We are still finalizing the speaker line up and other details. As good as last year’s conference was, we still learned a lot and are poised to make this year’s even better. Stay tuned and don’t miss this event!


The Society has been celebrating our 60th year in many ways, some traditional and others more practical. By this I mean our staff and our members have been exceeding expectations and achieving great things. The Professional Development Matrix, the Mentorship Initiative, delivering the grant funded Understanding and Fighting Basement Fires, being awarded a grant to deliver an Implementing NFPA 1700 class, enhancing existing relationships with other organizations, (UL, NAFTD, IFSI, etc) and building new ones. Our Society and its members are increasingly to sought out as collaborators and SMEs by other fire service organizations. This is a testament not only to Leigh and her staff but to each of you, and the expertise and professionalism that you demonstrate and share through your engagement with the ISFSI. That, my friends is celebration indeed!


I’ve shared what follows more than once before with you and I am shamelessly going to burden you with it again. The ISFSI is a member driven organization. We flourish through the selfless time and effort our members share with each other. There is no limit on the ways each and any of us can contribution to the Society. We’ve got a lot of talent in this organization and I’m going to keep after y’all to get you to share it with your brothers and sisters. Thus:

Please join me in celebrating our past and future successes by re-committing yourselves to the mission and vision of the ISFSI. As members each of us is committed to, “Inspiring, supporting and elevating instructors around the world”, and “To be the premier instructor organization providing resources to improve safety, efficiency and effectiveness of the fire service”. Fulfilling this mission and this vision is only possible through our combined efforts. We really and truly do NEED each and every one of you to continue participating and contributing to the Society as you have done, (can I get away with saying, “even more than you have done”), in the past!

You know what’s coming next don’t ya! The “ask”. Here’s a short list of some of the ways you can make a contribution to the ISFSI:

  • Jump on the next “Happy Hour”. They take place on the first Wednesday of every month. Better yet, take the lead on one of the discussions.
  • Take one of the online Continuing Education Courses. Better yet, develop and present one!
  • Ditto for the Modern Mentor Webinar Series. There is some very awesome stuff there, but I bet some of you can top it!
  • Subscribe to and participate in the ISFSI Member Forum. Many of our members who are new instructors and training officers are seeking your guidance, expertise and resources. Help a brother or sister out!
  • Write a little something for this publication for crying out loud!
  • Contribute to The Buzz (our site blog). Contribute something to the Resource Library.
  • Get on one of our committees. They are truly doing great things and could sure use another worker bee or six 😉
  • Take the online Training Officer Credential class. (Yeah, I know. You’ve already got your state cert., it ain’t exactly cheap, time, family, work, etc., etc.) But . . . . ya never know, you just might learn something useful. Cause why? Cause it a great class lead by one Bad A** instructor, that’s why!
  • Become a Mentor or a Mentee. How you ask? Get on the development committee and find out!
  • And last but not least, RECRUIT A MEMBER (or twelve). I know you’ve heard this from me before and trust me, you will keep hearing it. EACH AND
  • EVERY ONE OF US knows at least one person who could benefit from and/or contribute to the success of the ISFSI. They won’t join if you don’t ask. Don’t want to be a tail twister? Fine. Send me their digits and I’ll twist it for you, (just know I’m going to drop your name).

Feel free to reach out to for any of the above recommendations.
Thank you, and PLEASE be kind to yourselves and have a meaningful holiday!

1 Comment
1 Like

Thank you for your leadership and message

January 1, 2022 02:26 PM by John K. Murphy, Esq


Great message and look forward to working with you and ISFSI this year again. Happy New Year to you and family.


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