FREDERICK, Md (WDVM) — After four years of rigorous work, a Frederick County fire officer has earned a top certification through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Captain Jeremy Wade didn’t grow up dreaming of becoming a firefighter, it was a passion he stumbled onto after graduation.
“I had some free time after college and a real good friend of mine convinced me to join as a volunteer and it just kind of stuck,” Wade explained.
That passion has stuck for the last 18 years as Wade climbed the ladder to become captain and station commander of the Green Valley Fire Station #25 in Monrovia, and he hasn’t quite finished reaching for more.
Wade recently completed a masters-level course through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Fire Academy, and received certification as an Executive Fire Officer.
“[The program,] it’s designed to look at critical reasoning, statistical analysis, and to really kind of take a critical look at issues within the service and how we provide that service,” Wade explained.
Throughout the four year program, Wade dug into topics like apparatus collision issues, how staff is selected to manage emergency operation centers, and the mental health of firefighters.
“We are there for someone’s worst day,” Wade said, “how we manage and how we support our people to manage the emotional toll of this job is something that’s very important.”
On Tuesday morning, County Executive Jan Gardner and division of Fire and Rescue Services leadership gathered to recognize Wade.
For those who work alongside Wade, they say he’s become more encouraging of safety practices while on-duty.
“He’s very knowledgeable on some things that some firefighters don’t think about, so he’s very good with that,” said fellow member of Green Valley Fire Station, Adam Wiles.