As we near the end of 2019 and prepare to enter a new decade, the Chief Officers Association (COA) Executive Board would like to wish all of our members, active and retired, a very healthy and happy holiday season.
2019 proved to be a very busy year for the Los Angeles City Fire Department. With the many challenging structure fires, complex wildfires, and the ever-growing number of emergency medical incidents our Chief Officers are reminded of the incredible responsibility we have to serve our community and support our members. The responsibilities of today’s Chief Officer expand far beyond command and control of major incidents. As behavioral health issues and thoughts of suicide affect members in the Fire Service, our Chief Officers are expected to recognize signs of distress and take steps necessary to mitigate issues our members might be experiencing. It is important to recognize that we as Chief Officers are not immune to those same stressors. The COA is here for all of our members with trained doctors and psychologists who are available to help you in your time of need. We hope that this holiday season offers you some time to unwind and do the things that you enjoy.
The Association would like to recognize and thank the members of our Negotiating Team. The COA Negotiating Team was comprised of Chiefs Michael Castillo, Jeff Dapper, Jason Hing, John Drake, and Lead Negotiator Rick Combs. They dedicated countless hours and committed themselves in the negotiation of one of the best three-year contracts many of us have ever seen. This contract was successfully negotiated through their hard work, our collaboration with our Brothers and Sisters at United Firefighters Local 112, and a great working relationship with Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas. Relationships matter and our Negotiating Team proved how collaboration and solidarity can pay off during the negotiating process.
Finally I would like to thank Chiefs Kady Kepner, Robert Nelson, and Dean Zipperman for accepting their nominations to be re-elected to the COA Executive Board. It is evident that our Chief Officers appreciate their dedication, service and the contributions they provide to the members of our organization. I look forward to working with all of you as we continue cultivating partnerships, in an effort to enhance member benefits and improve the COA.
We hope that all of you have the opportunity to spend time with your family and friends this Holiday Season and that 2020 proves to be a safe and prosperous New Year!
Respectfully yours in service,
Jaime and your Executive Board