Ken Brucki sworn in as new Orland Fire Protection District Chief
Chief Brucki's presentation at swearing in ceremony
(Photos below. Right click to download)
The first thing I’d like to do is acknowledge everyone who chose to be here tonight. I hope in the next few days or weeks to thank you personally for your part in making this transition possible.
And I’d like to publicly thank:
The Orland Fire Protection District Board of Trustees, for your faith and confidence in giving me the opportunity to serve as your Chief Administrator. I will not let you down.
Battalion Chief Ray Kay, for your dedication to the District and your efforts in directing the District during this transitional period. Ray will continue with Administrative duties under my command.
Politicians: Mayor McLaughlin, Mayor Hastings, Commissioner Gorman, (list out others that may show)
Pleasantview Board of Trustees and Chief Kevin Doyle for your guidance and showing me what a first rate organization is run like.
Most Especially the Pleasantview Fire Protection District and all its members. I have made lifelong friends and will always think ofPleasantview as the finest fire organization, until just recently (pause) now they’re the 2ndfinest.
Many people here, especially the press may be wondering what Orland got when they chose to hire me.
I started as a volunteer firefighter at MarionettePark. I was fascinated at the prospect of being a fireman. I began taking classes and accepting any new challenge presented before me.
I went on to become a paramedic through Christ hospital and took on more challenge working for a private ambulance company to gain more experience. Still I could not satisfy my desire for more challenge and experience so I pursued a part time position with the Darien-Woodridge Fire Protection District. Taking even more classes and continuing to build knowledge and gain experience.
I kept running into the same problem…I didn’t know enough…So I went back to school, getting myassociates degree in fire science from Moraine Valley, I continued on a formal education path by earning a Bachelor’s Degree in fire science management from SIU, As my administrative duties grew, I accepted one more challenge and completed a Master’s degree through Illinois Benedictine University in Organizational Behavior and Organizational Development. A degree that will serve me well as I accept this new position.
Thankfully I was blessed with a full time position with the Pleasantview Fire Protection District. I will be eternally grateful to the fine personnel I had the honor to serve with while developing in my career. Pleasantview encouraged continued education and facilitation at the department.
I was able to work in the division of training and continue to master techniques and pass along some of the knowledge, skills and abilities I had developed over the years. I learned from and continued to work with one of the finest Fireman I have ever met, Captain Mike Grazian thank you.
My work as an instructor opened the door for many new opportunities. I became an instructor for the Fire Service Institute at University of Illinois. I worked in many different fire and rescue programs. Two achievements I am very proud of was the opportunity to work alongside legendary leaders in the fire service and help develop the curriculum for the “Saving Our Own” program and building the Structural Collapse program from the ground up. Both programs have helped shape firefighters on a national level and are instrumental in firefighter safety.
I was selected to serve as the rescue coordinator for the Southwest United Fire Districts. During its time the SUFD Academy was one of the finest in the state and also allowed me to work with many members of the Orland Fire District.
Another accomplishment over the years was the ability to serve on several ADHOC committees established through the State Fire Marshal’s Office. The ADHOC committees are responsible for establishing the job performance requirements in the various disciplines in the fire service. I was selected to chair several ADHOC committees over the years that eventually lead to the appointment of Chairman of the Advisory Board. I was now in charge of overseeing the work done by all ADHOC committees. I was appointed to be the testing administrator through the offices of the state fire marshal. In that position I was responsible for writing, developing and validating the curriculum for every certification program in the state of Illinois.
LIKE MOST OF US IN THIS ROOM The harder I worked, the more INVITATIONS I GOT TO WORK HARD.
And yes most of my leadership and instructor’s success was achieved while serving in the rank of firefighter---leadership happens at every level of the fire service---you don’t have to have a rank to be a leader. This is a quality I hope to nurture here inOrland because I recognize that at any given moment any of our personnel can be called upon to leadthrough character, skill, or knowledge.
This brings me to our vision for this district: Our largest responsibility is maintaining the safety of thepersonnel who work for this district while providing the best possible response to the public safety needs. My job is to look at the big picture and prepare for the great, “Anything can happen”. It is often difficult for the general public to understand this type of preparation. However, anybody sitting out there who has ever put on this uniform and laced up a pair of boots knows that anything CAN HAPPEN…and it usually does.
I see that as one of our basic principles for training. This principle isn’t that we can prepare ourselves for any situation. It’s a principle designed to establish an excellent foundation for ongoing skill development through training and trust.
As I say goodbye to one family, I am welcomed in another. I will work every day with my heart and soul to build relationships and earn the trust of every single individual who serves the Orland Fire District.
If you see me in the community you’ll know I am:
Fair, but firm
Dedicated and loyal
I am a Fireman
And Lord Knows, I got get this clear right now…a Cub’s fan.
Thank your family (remember the moms and dads)
I would like to Thank:
Friends for your support
Grandmother Marie Badke
In-Laws Tom and Barb Trusk
Parents Jack Brucki and Sadie Walker
Children Jesselyn, Christian, and Patrick for constantly reminding how beautiful this world is
Patti- my soul mate and savior. By far the greatest human being I have ever had the privilege to meet and I am grateful every single day that she would have me.
Photos courtesy of Gerardo Lopez for the Orland Fire Protection District