Commissioner John E. Brennan

Commissioner John E. Brennan received the Firefighter of the Year Award on March 5, 2018 at the N.A. Blanchard Post 1040. Commissioner Brennan's daughter, Lisa, accepted the award on his behalf. Click "Read More" to see the Nominating Letter.

"When you think of the Elsmere Fire Department’s motto “The Pride of Bethlehem” you can’t help but to think of this individual, and I am proud to endorse this year’s recipient.As a member of the Elsmere Fire Department for over four decades, this individual has long exemplified a level of commitment that can serve as a model for others.He clearly recognizes the impact that Elsmere has had on his life, and has been aggressive in giving back to this department, and our community.He has been a motivating force for our department, and has balanced his family, career and community involvement, in an extraordinary manner.He personifies all that is right about the fire service.

This year’s awardee joined this department 44 years ago and began taking on leadership roles within his first year as a member, and has remained in in a leadership role for the past 43 years.He has served as Company Vice President, Company President, and then after only 10 years as a member, he was elected commissioner and has remained in that position for the past 34 years!And for the past 7 of them, has served as Chairman of the Board of Fire Commissioners.His commitment to serving the residents of Bethlehem goes even beyond his role as a firefighter.He currently serves as the Director of the Bethlehem Emergency Management Office, a position he has held since January 5th, 1988.His commitment to protecting lives and property is exemplary.He has also held numerous other leadership positions including Deputy Director of the Albany County Office of Emergency Management, Deputy Fire Coordinator, Albany County Fire Coordinator, and Chairman of the Albany County Local Emergency Planning Committee.Additionally, he has won many prestigious awards throughout his distinguished carrier, including Elsmere Fire Department’s Kenneth E. McNary Achievement Award.

This individual has been a strong voice and advocate for the fire services.His influential leadership has helped advance Elsmere’s mission and priorities in very specific ways for the past four decades.

As our community continues to grow, this individual recognized our need to ensure the same high level of fire protection to those emerging areas in our fire district.In 1982 he was one the commissioners who decided to purchase land on the southern portion of our district knowing that someday this area would be developed more fully and require additional fire protection.Since 1982, this individual has been a motivating force in fiscal responsibility ensuring this vision and the community’s fire protection needs would be met.Thanks to his persistence, efforts, and hard work, this vision will become a reality by the end of this year.

This individual continues to be a valued member of the Elsmere Fire Department.Outside of his annual pilgrimage to Florida, he rarely misses a day at his office, and simply put, he loves to come to the firehouse.He has a quick wit, and keeps the laughter flowing and the mood light.He is always courteous and respectful and is quick to lend a helping hand whenever one is needed.

The Elsmere Fire Department could not have achieved the level of excellence is stands for today without his unwavering dedication to his fellow residents and firefighters.It is with sincere conviction and pleasure that we enthusiastically select Jack Brennan as this year’s recipient of Firefighter of the Year."