Special ceremony held for 21 promoted in Kaua‘i Fire Department

The Kaua‘i Fire Department held a special ceremony Thursday to promote 21 firefighters at the Līhu‘e Civic Center’s Mo‘ikeha courtyard.

“The Kaua‘i Fire Department provides all-hazard emergency response service from eight fire stations and 11 lifeguard towers islandwide, for over 71,000 residents and 29,000 visitors each day,” said Fire Chief Robert Westerman at Thursday’s ceremony. “As our island evolves, we must also evolve with it, and continue to educate ourselves and improve our services in order to protect the health and safety of all citizens.”

Fire Chief Westerman began Thursday’s ceremony by explaining the significance of the pins the men were about to receive.

“In the early days of the North American fire departments, orders were given to the firefighters through a large brass device resembling megaphones,” he said. “We know these as ‘bugles’ and a firefighter’s rank is signified by the color and number of bugles, and the arrangement on their badge.”

At the ceremony, the Assistant Chief received a gold badge with three crossed bugles; Fire Captains received a silver badge with two bugles crowned with an eagle; those promoted to Firefighter III received a silver badge with the symbols of their rank; and those promoted to Firefighter II retained their silver badge inscribed with the tools of their trade.

“Every day, our firefighters and ocean safety officers must use extraordinary skills as they risk their lives to protect the well-being of our loved ones,” said Mayor Derek S. K. Kawakami. “As a community, we have the highest expectations of our first responders, and I am proud to say that the Kaua‘i Fire Department exceeds these standards. On behalf of the County of Kaua‘i, it is my honor to thank and congratulate all of you for this great achievement, and your continued commitment and service to our community.”

The following individuals received promotional pins at Thursday’s ceremony: Michael Scovel, Ronald Bush, Francisco Garcia, Adam Hussey, Gavin Kennelly, Dane Smith, Timothy Terrazas, Ryan Washburn, Kaimalino Andrade, Kerry Jon Ishikawa, Michael Karratti, Jace Schaefer, Jed Smith, Chad Tabuchi, Michael Thompson, Russell Vierra, Micah Contrades, Abraham Mohr, Edward Pono Pananganan, Raymond Keahi, and Alan Satta. Promotions will take effect on Jan. 1, 2019.

Michael Scovel was promoted to Assistant Chief. Scovel has served in KFD for 27 years, with his last assignment as Fire Captain of the Training Bureau. His contributions include helping KFD to achieve International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) certifications and starting the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) program for all new firefighter recruits. Scovel will begin his promotional assignment supervising and managing fire operations.

Ronald Bush was promoted to Fire Captain. Bush has served in KFD for 19 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III at the Kapa‘a fire station. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Kalāheo fire station.

Francisco Garcia was promoted to Fire Captain. Garcia has served in KFD for 15 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III, Rescue Specialist, at the Līhu‘e fire station. In 2006, Francisco developed a new set of maps for all stations to improve emergency response for which he was awarded KFD’s Employee of the Year. He currently serves as KFD’s program manager for the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS), and the Scuba Dive Rescue program manager for which he holds a Public Safety Diver Instructor certification and Dive Rescue I training certification. In 2010, his rescue crew was awarded the Benjamin Franklin Award for Valor for the rescue of two men on a crashed ultralight in Hanapēpē Valley. Garcia will begin his promotional assignment at the Kōloa fire station.

Adam Hussey was promoted to Fire Captain. Hussey has served in KFD for 14 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III at the Hanalei fire station. In 2014, his rescue crew was awarded the Benjamin Franklin Award for Valor for the rescue of over 121 people from the rising streams in Kalalau. He will begin his promotional assignment in the Training Bureau.

Gavin Kennelly was promoted to Fire Captain. Kennelly has served in KFD for 17 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III at the Kapa‘a fire station. His contributions include working as a United States Lifesaving Association (USLA) instructor and as the lead instructor of the KFD Rescue Water Craft program. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Hanapēpē fire station.

Dane Smith was promoted to Fire Captain. Smith has served in KFD for 17 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III at the Līhu‘e fire station. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Kalāheo fire station.

Timothy Terrazas was promoted to Fire Captain. Terrazas has served in KFD for 19 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III at the Hanalei fire station. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Hanapēpē fire station.

Ryan Washburn was promoted to Fire Captain. Washburn has served in KFD for 14 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter III at the Hanalei fire station. His contributions include working on KFD’s Boat Committee, and serving as a rescue short haul instructor. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Waimea fire station.

Kaimalino Andrade was promoted to Firefighter III. Andrade has served in KFD for 13 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter II, Rescue Specialist, at the Līhu‘e fire station. His contributions to KFD include working as a ropes rescue instructor and radio communications specialist. Andrade will begin his promotional assignment at the Hanapēpē fire station.

Kerry Jon Ishikawa was promoted to Firefighter III. Ishikawa has served in KFD for 15 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter II, HAZMAT Specialist, at the Kaiakea fire station. His contributions to KFD include working as a ropes rescue instructor and peer fitness trainer. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Kalāheo fire station.

Michael “Imai” Karratti was promoted to Firefighter III. Karratti has served in KFD for 13 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter II, Rescue Specialist, at the Līhu‘e fire station. His contributions to KFD include working as a peer fitness trainer, and an instructor in ropes rescue, vehicle extrication, and helicopter short haul operations. Karratti will begin his promotional assignment at the Waimea fire station.

Jace Schaefer was promoted to Firefighter III. Schaefer has served in KFD for seven years with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Waimea fire station. His contributions to KFD include working on the EMS committee, working as a Fire Ground Rehab program instructor, CPR instructor, First Responder re-certification instructor, and Forcible-Entry program instructor. He will begin his promotional assignment in the Prevention Bureau.

Jed Smith was promoted to Firefighter III. Smith has served in KFD for 19 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Hanalei fire station. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Hanalei fire station.

Chad Tabuchi was promoted to Firefighter III. Tabuchi has served in KFD for nine years, with his last assignment as Firefighter II, HAZMAT Specialist, at the Kaiākea fire station. He is the chair of the KFD Equipment Committee, a member of the Health and Wellness Committee, and instructs trainings with the current recruit class. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Hanapēpē fire station.

Michael Thompson was promoted to Firefighter III. Thompson has served in KFD for 15 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Līhu‘e fire station. His contributions to KFD include his work on the Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) and Equipment Committees. He will begin his promotional assignment in the Prevention Bureau.

Russell Vierra was promoted to Firefighter III. Vierra has served in KFD for nine years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Waimea fire station. His contributions to KFD include working on the Apparatus Committee and as an instructor in the Driver Training program, Initial Attack Fire Ground Operations program, and for CPR and First Responder re-certifications. Vierra will begin his promotional assignment in the Prevention Bureau.

Micah Contrades was promoted to Firefighter II, HAZMAT Specialist. Contrades has served in KFD for the past four years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Hanapēpē fire station. His contributions to KFD include being a member of the Mobile Data Terminal (MDT) and Report Management System (RMS) Committees. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Kaiākea fire station.

Abraham Mohr was promoted to Firefighter II, HAZMAT Specialist. Mohr has served in KFD for three years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Kapa‘a fire station. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Kaiākea fire station.

Edward Pono Pananganan was promoted to Firefighter II, HAZMAT Specialist. Pananganan has served in KFD for 17 years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Kapa‘a fire station. His contributions to KFD include being an instructor for the Water Craft program and Vehicle Extrication programs. He will begin his promotional assignment at the Kaiākea fire station.

Raymond Keahi was promoted to Firefighter II, Rescue Specialist. Keahi has served in KFD for nine years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Līhu‘e fire station. His contributions to KFD include helping to create the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization – The Friends of Kaua‘i Fire Department – that assists firefighters and the Kaua‘i community. Keahi will begin his promotional assignment at the Līhu‘e fire station.

Alan Satta was promoted to Firefighter II, Rescue Specialist. Satta has served in KFD for nine years, with his last assignment as Firefighter I at the Līhu‘e fire station. His contributions to KFD include being the Fall Prevention coordinator, vice-president of the KFD Relief Fund, and the Hands-Only CPR coordinator for the Līhu‘e District. Satta will begin his promotional assignment at the Līhu‘e fire station.