2015 Volunteers of the Year
Operations Volunteer of the Year: To qualify for this award, the nominees must show leadership to Grapevine Fire Department and the Citizens Fire Academy Alumni by their support of the following operations functions: Equipment Retrieval, Photo Squad and Rehab 561.
Winner: Tamara Cole
While R561 wasn't busy this year in a fire scene support role, there was one other significant event that involved a particular fire fighter. Tamara's experience and support were invaluable. When DE/PM Mike Stark was going through chemo, Tamara volunteered to take Mike to numerous treatments. They struck up a deep friendship that included texts of encouragement and hours of laughter as they drove to and from chemo treatments. At one point Mike related that one of the nurses asked them to be quiet because they were laughing so hard and "disturbing" other patients. Tamara's background as a social worker in the healthcare industry made her a perfect match to help Mike through his treatments and lift his spirit. Just as CFA has become part of the GFD extended family, Tamara bonded with Mike to become a part of his as he endured cancer treatment.
Administrative Volunteer of the Year: To qualify for this award, the nominees have shown participation and leadership to Grapevine Fire Department and the Citizens Fire Academy Alumni by their support of the following administrative functions: Courier, Document Management, Hospitality, Database Entry including Intubation logs, training logs, and hydrant testing data.
Winner: Chris Hudgins - Hospitiality
Chris has once again made himself invaluable by making magic with his culinary skills. His time and dedication to honoring the men and women of GFD by baking cookies, making queso, and home made ice cream for promotion and retirement ceremonies, firefighter appreciation barbeques, and for all manner of CFA meetings demonstrate his commitment and care for not only his GFD friends, but also for his CFA colleagues. Chris has also recently demonstrated that he is multi-talented by undertaking the CAD project to get building designs scanned into firehouse.
Fire Prevention Volunteer of the Year: To qualify To qualify for this award, the nominees have shown participation and leadership to Grapevine Fire Department and the Citizens Fire Academy Alumni by their support of the following fire prevention functions: Emergency Operations, Fire Investigation Support, Public Events, and Smoke Detector distribution. Some events that required support by CFA personnel include: The job fair and fiesta, the police motorcycle rally, 7 weeks of Beach Patrol in support of the annual fireworks, Back to School event, Veterans Day Parade, GFD Open House, Main St. Christmas Parade, and Pancakes with Santa.
Winner: Robyn McKinney
Robyn was all around volunteer of the year in 2014 and she continues to be a stalwart of support this year. Robyn was second only to our volunteer of the year for the number of events she participated in. Not only did she participate in seven weeks of fireworks "Beach Patrol", but in all but two of the public events held in 2015, including For Women - For Life at Baylor Hospital, the Shady Oaks trailer park "Family Fiesta", the Burlington Coat Factory Safety Day, the Back to School Safety Fair, Open House and Butterfly Flutterby.
Rookie of the Year: Nominees in this category are the individuals who completed the Citizens Fire Academy in 2014, joined the alumni and began making contributions to the Citizens Fire Academy Alumni in support of the Grapevine Fire Department.
Winner: Ray Till
From our Class 17, only three signed up to join the Citizens Fire Academy Alumni. Of the three, Ray Till is the only one to carry through with his commitment to volunteer. Ray is a member of R561, and has assisted with the TCC high rise drills and open house.
Volunteer of the Year: The volunteer of the year is just that. The person who has given more of their time and efforts by being involved in more events and projects than any other volunteer. This is someone who has not only been a "go to" person, but has done so tirelessly for more than just this current year.
Winner: Carla Ulrichherring
Carla has been very instrumental to the success of GFD for many years. In 2015, she again was the "go to" person for the "Beach Patrol" in ensuring that CFA had nightly coverage for every fireworks show. Asking someone to commit every Friday night through the summer for a series of events to provide for the safety and enjoyment of the citizens of Grapevine and our visitors, is asking a lot. But time and again, Carla was the one we could count on to ensure there was coverage. In January, Carla attended the sky warn class in Ft. Worth and later studied for and obtained her HAM radio operators license in order to be of service in the EOC in the event of an emergency. She is a valuable member of R561. She serves with Chris Hudgins as a valuable member of the Hospitality committee, and has consistently participated in numerous customer events