Burlington County Emergency Services
Lifetime Achievement Award
The Burlington County Emergency Services
Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to individuals who demonstrate
extraordinary accomplishments while serving the fire
The Lifetime Achievement Award was established by the Burlington County Emergency Services Advisory Board to recognize members of the emergency services who have demonstrated and exhibited a true commitment by contributing to the advancement and leadership of the emergency services in the County.
The recipients of this prestigious award have demonstrated, through their actions, the qualities and characteristics of Advocate, Leader, Visionary, Mentor, Teacher. They have been leaders in local, county, state and national organizations; developed and facilitated changes in policy, standards, guidelines and curriculum; and promoted Public Safety through persistence and innovation for the betterment of all.
Let it be known that these individuals represent the highest qualities to serve as a responder and leader and have been bestowed this honor and recognition as recipients of the Burlington County Lifetime Achievement Award.
Lifetime Achievement Award
Fire Service Recipients
Emergency Medical Service Recipients
Public Safety Recipient
Thaddeus "Ted" Lowden
Ted is a lifelong resident of Marlton in Evesham Township. He joined the fire department as a volunteer firefighter in 1975. As a volunteer, he served in a variety of administrative and line officer positions, including Volunteer Chief, Assistant Chief, Captain, Lieutenant and Firefighter. Staff assignments included Training Officer and Ladder Company Officer.
In 1984, Ted became a career firefighter and was named Deputy Fire Marshal one year later. In 1989, Ted became Chief of the Evesham Township Fire District No. 1, a position he currently holds. Chief Lowden is responsible for the administration and coordination of all fire and EMS operations and activities within the township. Related duties include pre-fire planning, apparatus and facility management as well as on scene fire command. Other duties include recommending equipment and apparatus purchases, budget preparation and supervising personnel. Additional responsibilities include service as the Emergency Management Coordinator for Evesham.
Chief Lowden is a graduate of the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer Program and holds an AAS Degree from Burlington County College, BS from University of Maryland in Fire Science and a masters degree from St. Joseph's University in Public Safety Administration. He also holds certifications for Emergency Medical Technician, New Jersey Fire Official, New Jersey Fire Instructor Level II, New Jersey Department of Education-Adult Instructor and Residential and Commercial Building Code Inspector Level I-HHS
The following are highlights of his dedicated service to the residents of Burlington County:
W. Rolland Connelly,Jr
W. Rolland Connelly, Jr. was a lifelong Burlington resident. He fought his first fire in 1946 as a Junior Member of Mitchell Fire Company IV in Burlington City. It was a mutual aid call to a major lumberyard fire in Mount Holly. That experience sparked his burning love for the fire service that never faded.
In 1956, Rolland moved to the Steven's Station section of Burlington Township. He quickly saw the need for additional fire protection in that area and rallied several residents together to form Relief Fire Company #3 in 1957. In addition to being president of the new company, he later became assistant chief and eventually Chief of the Burlington Township Fire Department. He eventually became Burlington Township's first Fire Marshal.
Rolland was very active in fire service on many levels. He was president of the Burlington County Fire Chiefs' Association in 1970 and 1971, and President of the Burlington County Firefighters' Association prior to that. He served on the New Jersey State Firemen's Advisory Council, the forerunner to the current Fire Safety Commission, for many years. When the Division of Fire Safety was created in 1983, Rolland was appointed to serve on the Health and Safety Advisory Council, as well as liaison to the Training and Education Council. He was also a member of two National Fire Protection Association technical committees - Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus, which developed national standards for the manufacturing of SCBA; and Fire Service Training, which created standards for improving all aspects of fire department training across the country.
Chief Connelly was a very strong proponent of training. Not only was he a prime mover behind the development of the original fire training grounds in Westampton in the mid 1970s, he sat on the Burlington County Fire Academy Training Council, which guided the progress of the new facility. Rolland was also a certified instructor. He taught practical classes on many topics, including fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems, flammable liquids, and organic peroxides. He taught these classes locally as well as in Pennsylvania, where he was an adjunct instructor, and at the Delaware State Fire School, where he was also a certified instructor. Rolland's passion for training has been memorialized through the "W. Rolland Connelly, Jr., Academic Excellence Award" established in his honor and presented annually to the new recruit with the highest overall score in the Firefighter-I training program in Burlington County.
Chief Connelly was an astute leader who recognized the need for the fire service in Burlington County to speak with a unified voice. He pushed for the formation of the original Fire Advisory Board in the 1990s. That group was responsible for many positive changes in the fire service in Burlington County. In 2003, the Advisory Board was reorganized to include the EMS community, a move that Rolland would have strongly embraced.
Rolland was also a firm believer in fire prevention. He conducted numerous tabletop demonstrations and lectures for the fire service and community groups that taught essential fire safety tips to adults and children alike. His efforts in fire prevention were so outstanding that, in 1975, he was awarded the grand prize in a nationwide fire prevention contest sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association.
Rolland served on many committees during his time in the fire service. One of them was the apparatus committee for Relief Fire Company #3. It was his idea to include a transverse hose bed behind the cab of the first new fire engine purchased by the young company in the early 1960s. Such a concept, now a standard feature of fire apparatus, was unheard of in this area at that time.
Rolland served as a Deputy Fire Coordinator in Burlington County for a number of years, and also as Civil Defense Director for Burlington Township. Both these titles were volunteer positions.
Rolland's service to mankind was recognized in 1990 when he was chosen "Citizen of the Year" in Burlington Township, a very prestigious honor. The 200 Club of Burlington County also acknowledged his efforts in 1994 when he was presented the "Distinguished Service Award." Congressman Jim Saxton also presented Rolland with the Benjamin Franklin Medal.
Evan K. Kline
Evan Kline joined the fire service at age 16 in 1937. His first membership was with the NJ Forest Fire Service, where he served for 36 years and was a district warden. When he moved to Mount Holly, he joined the fire department there in 1943. During his membership with the America Hose Co. #4, he rose through the ranks from Lieutenant to Captain to Assistant Chief and eventually to Chief of the Department.
Evan had a world of knowledge in fire service. Promoting education and training was a big part of Evan's career. Not only did he take many training courses for his own knowledge, but he also was instrumental in helping create the thought and idea for our current training facility and our Central Communication facility.
Evan was the Assistant Burlington County Fire Marshal for 13 years before becoming our first full-time Fire Marshal. As the first full-time Fire Marshal, Evan was in charge of the fire training facility when it opened. At that time, he supervised two fulltime employees, five part time employees and 20 fire instructors.
Evan holds countless memberships to fire organizations on county, state and national levels. Evan was an instructor for Burlington County College, the NJ State Fire College, Burlington County Police Academy, NJ State Police and the Burlington County Fire Academy (now the Emergency Services Training Center).
Along with all of this experience, Evan also found time to be the Fire Inspector in Mount Holly for 30 years. He also was a Burlington County Fire Coordinator, a Deputy Burlington County Emergency Management Director and the first President of the Burlington County Fire Marshal's Association.
Ernest J. Greenwald, Jr.
Ernest J. Greenwald, Sr. has been an intricate part of Burlington County Emergency Services for more than 50 years. Ernie worked his way up to Chief of Lumberton Fire Co. No.1 and was the first Fire Marshal in Lumberton Township.
Ernie's accomplishments in Burlington County include being a charter member of the Burlington County Fire Marshal's office, serving as the Assistant County Fire Marshal for 13 years and paving the way for fire investigations in Burlington County. Ernie was President of the Burlington County Fireman's Association in 1964-65 and also served a term as president of the Burlington County Fire Chiefs Association.
Ernie helped organize the Burlington County 200 Club and served as secretary and vice president for the organization.
Ernie was an advocate for Burlington County, serving as a county Executive Committeeman for the NJ State Fireman's Association for 10 years. Ernie served as Vice President for seven years and eventually President of the NJ State Fireman's Association for 11 years. Ernie continues to serve as President Emeritus of the NJ State Fireman's Association since he stepped down as President in 1994.
Ernie also was an advocate for Burlington County while serving as the Secretary/Treasurer of the New Jersey State Fireman's Association for 10 years as well as the Secretary for the Eastern Division of Fire Chiefs for 10 years.
C. Kenneth Anderson
Award Presented June 26th, 2008
C. Kenneth Anderson became a member of the fire service profession when be joined Delran Fire Company No 1 as a Junior Member in August, 1948. He graduated from the Burlington County Fire School the following spring. Ken was an active firefighter and a fire police and served terms as Secretary and President. He was Chief in 1960 and 1961.
Ken has been President of the Delran Township Firemen’s Relief Association. For many years, he was President of the County Firemen’s Relief Association. He is a Life Member of the State Firemen’s Association. Ken was a charter member of the Delran Township Exempt Firemen’s Association in 1962. He was the original Vice President, served as President, and has been Secretary since 1971.
Anderson was President of the County Fire Police Association in 1964 and 1965. He is a Life Member of the State Fire Police Association and is Chair of the Legislative Committees of each.
Chief Anderson joined the County Fire Chiefs’ Association while an Assistant Chief and was its President 1966-67. He has remained active and worked on several Committees. He is a member of the County Incident Support Team. Ken is a Life Member and Past President of the County Firefighter’s Association and Chair of its Legislative Committee.
He was a delegate from the local exempt firemen’s association to the County Exempt Firemen’s Association and worked his way through the chairs of the County Exempts. He served several terms as Burlington County Executive Committeeman to the New Jersey State Exempt Firemen’s Association and was State President in 1983 and 84. During his term he organized the first Statewide Firefighters Memorial Service which continues today.
Chief Anderson joined the State Fire Chiefs’ Association. As Publicity Chairman he started the Five Trumpet Journal, the organization’s newsletter that is printed five times per year, 32 years ago and continues as its Editor. He compiles a bi-weekly e-mail newsletter that was started in 2001. Ken fills the Association’s statutory seat on the NJ Domestic Security Preparedness Planning Group. In 1991 and 1992 he was President of the Association. In 2006 he was named President, Emeritus.
Ken has been a member of the IAFC and the Eastern Division since 1961. He served several years on the Eastern’s Constitution and Resolutions Committee; many as Chair. He was also the Eastern representative on the IAFC CBR Committee for nine years and was a member of two IAFC Task Forces.
Anderson was appointed to the State Fire Safety Commission in 1984 as the original member to fill the seat for a representative of a volunteer firemen’s association. He was appointed Chair of the Commission’s Training and Education Advisory Council. He has served on several of the Commission Committees and perennially is the New Jersey representative to the conferences of Mid-Atlantic Association of State Fire Commissions.
When the Fire Science Technology degree was established at Burlington County College in 1997, Ken was appointed by the College as Program Coordinator. As part of his duties, he participates in the annual Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education conference at the National Fire Academy.
Anderson has been honored as recipient of the Ben Franklin Silver Medal by Congressman Saxton, a Distinguished Service Award by the 200 Club of Burlington County, and the Firefighter of the Year—Lifetime Achievement Award by the Samuel T. Lambert Post 3020, VFW.
Edward H. Kensler, Jr.
Award Presented 2009
Edward H. Kensler, Jr. has been a member of the fire service for more than 25 years. His list of accomplishments could fill many pages of this program. His service covers all aspects of the fire service profession; suppression, prevention, code enforcement, and education. His activities have been not only at the local and county level, but at state, and national levels as well.
Shortly after completing the basic Firefighter course, Chief Kensler became an instructor at this fire academy. During his tenure, he developed two new courses; (1) Forcible Entry for the Professional Firefighter and (2) Fire Prevention Initiatives. He has a NJ Vo-Tech Teaching Certificate and is a NJ Fire Instructor Level II, certified by the Division of Fire Safety.
He graduated with honors from Mercer County Community College with an Associate in Applied Science in Fire Science Technology degree. Later, he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Fire Science Technology with emphasis on Fire Administration from Thomas A. Edison State College. Fairleigh Dickenson University awarded Ed a Masters in Public Administration.
Kensler completed the Executive Fire Officer program at the National Fire Academy and received the EFO designation in 2001. He completed the rigorous application process of the Commission on Fire Accreditation International and received the Chief Fire Officer designation.
He has been active in many firematic organizations including: the Burlington County Fire Chiefs Association, Burlington County Fire Marshals Association, NJ State Career Fire Chiefs Association, NJ Chapter of the International Association of Fire Investigators, National Association of Fire Investigators, International Association of Fire Investigators, International Association of Fire Chiefs, International Society of Fire Service Instructors, and National Fire Protection Association.
Of particular note is his service as President of the Burlington County Fire Marshals Association. His participation in the many activities of the Association, lead to being named Fire Prevention Officer of the Year in 1997. He was recognized by the NJ Fire Prevention & Protection Association by being named Fire Prevention Officer of the Year in 1998.
Ed was a representative from the County Fire Marshal’s Association to the Fire Services Advisory Board. During his term he developed the documents and procedures to transform that body into the Emergency Services Advisory Board.
After servicing as Fire Official and Business Administrator from 1996-1999 for Florence Twp Fire District, Ed was appointed the first career Fire Chief in 2000. Under his leadership, the three fire companies and two first Aid Squads in the Township were consolidated into one fire department, for which a new fire station was constructed.
In addition to Ed’s academic and association record background, he holds the following certifications: NJ Hazardous Materials: On-Scene Incident Commander, NJ Incident Management Level II, NJ Dept of Personnel – Certified Public Manager, NAFI Fire and Explosive Investigator, Emergency Medical Technician, Construction Official, Fire Sub-code Official, and Fire Inspector HHS.
Along with Ed’s many academic accomplishments and all his awards for service, Ed Kensler has been a friend to all emergency service workers in Burlington County and State for many years.
Joseph A. Lehmann, Jr.
Award Presented July 1, 2010
Joseph Lehmann, Jr., entered the fire service in 1977 as a Junior Member of the Delran Fire Department. He has served his Department well filling the office of Deputy Chief in both Stations followed by two separate 2-year terms as Chief of Department. He was Training Coordinator of the Department in 1982 and 1983. He is a Past President of Station 232 and a Life Member of both Stations 231 and 232.
Chief Lehmann is an active member of the Burlington County Fire Chiefs Association. He was President of the Association in 1997 and 1998.
Joe became a Deputy County Fire Coordinator in 1995 and was appointed County Fire Coordinator in 1998; a position he continues to hold. County Fire Coordinators are responsible for developing and managing the County Fire Mutual Aid Plan; the inventory of Fire Apparatus and Personnel within the county; and providing assistance to Fire Departments as requested. Lehmann performed those responsibilities with distinction and was appointed Deputy Regional State Fire Coordinator. He designed and implemented a fire resource database to inventory fire department apparatus and fire stations as required by his position as County Fire Coordinator. The concept was so innovative that is now used by the NJ Division of Fire Safety throughout the state.
On his own initiative, Joe developed a website for the County Fire Chiefs Association. It has become a resource for all firefighters; not just the Chiefs. In connection with that project, an e-mail distribution list was created and notices of alerts, events, incidents, and projects are regularly sent by the webmaster; Joe Lehmann.
During his career, Lehmann has been honored several times: US Representative James Saxton, Benjamin Franklin Silver Medal for Meritorious Service (1996); New Jersey State Fire Chiefs Association, Second Valor Award (1996); Delran Fire Company No. 2, for actions above and beyond the call of duty in saving a life on July 26, 1996; Burlington County Times, selected as one of twelve residents of Burlington County “Making a Difference” in 2004; 200 Club of Burlington County, Distinguished Service Award (2006); Burlington County Emergency Services Advisory Board, Distinguished Service Award (2007); and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3020, Outstanding Firefighter of the Year (1999).
Chief Lehmann became the Second Vice President of the NJ State Fire Chiefs Association at its annual meeting in 2009.
Lehmann’s service extends beyond the fire service. He became a Special Police Officer in 1982 and then became a career officer in 1986. He advanced into other ranks of responsibility and was Chief of Police in Mount Laurel in 2008 and 2009. He was also a member of the Delran Emergency Squad for 17 years serving terms as Ambulance Commissioner and as President of the Squad.
Thomas Stephen King
Award Presented June 30, 2011
We all know him as Steve King. Chief King is a native of Burlington County, born and raised in Pemberton, NJ. While still in high school he joined Goodwill Volunteer Fire Department in February 1967. King has held several positions in the Department including Assistant Fire Chief, Training Officer, Trustee and is an Exempt and Life member of Station 191.
King relocated to Juliustown, Springfield Township where he joined Station 211 and held the following positions: Past Chief, Assistant Chief, Training Officer and currently an active member. King started with the old Burlington County Training Council and then become a charter member of the Emergency Service Advisory Board, an instructor at the Burlington County ESTC since 1979, also a charter member of the Burlington County College Fire Science program committee.
King is working in the County’s Office of Emergency Management as Deputy Coordinator serving as the project manager for the County’s Foam Task Force, Technical Rescue Committee, Incident Support Team, County HAZMAT and National Incident Management and Incident Command System programs. King is a long standing and active member of the Burlington County Fire Chief Association since 1984 and served on many of the committees during that time frame.
King retired from McGuire AFB with over 32 years as a career firefighter with 13 years as the Chief. He was presented the national certification as a Chief Executive Fire Officer IV in January 1998 and resides in Juliustown with his wife Barbara of 35 years.
Michael J. Reed
Award Presented June 28, 2012
Mike Reed hails from a fire service family that spans some 175 years of service to date. He started in the fire service in 1972 with the Riverton Fire Department as a fire fighter and there he held positions as Second and First Assistant Chiefs. In 1986, he joined the Palmyra Fire Department where he stayed active until 2000. During his time at Palmyra Fire, he held numerous positions including: Vice-President of the company, President of the Relief, and Fire Marshal. In 1988, Mike worked with the Palmyra Borough Council. He was able to show the need for a career position and became their first full-time Fire Marshal. He held that position for five years.
In 1993, Mike was hired by the County of Burlington as an Assistant Fire Marshal and assumed the duties of fire investigator, fire code inspector, and coordinator of the County’s Juvenile Fire Setter Educational Program.
In 1994, he was granted permission to establish an accelerant detection canine unit with his yellow lab Phoenix. The team remained in service until 2003 when Phoenix was retired due to health issues. Mike also is a member of the County Construction Board of Appeals of which he has been Chairperson since 2000. In 2010, he was promoted to his current position as Burlington County Fire Marshal.
Mike is certified with the Department of Community Affairs as a Fire Fighter Level I, Fire Official / Fire Inspector, Incident Management Level II, and Instructor Level I, and licensed as a Fire Sub Code and Fire Protection Inspector HHS. Also, he has attended the National Fire Academy for courses in Juvenile Fire Setter Intervention and Interview/Interrogation Techniques and Courtroom Testimony.
His other accomplishments include: life member of the Burlington County Fire Chief’s Association, past President of the Burlington County Fire Marshal’s Association and recipient of Fire Prevention Officer of the year in 2003. He is Secretary of the Burlington County Emergency Services Advisory Board, member of the New Jersey State Association of County Fire Marshal’s, and life member of the New Jersey State Firemen’s Association. Other memberships include: member of New Jersey State Advisory Council on Juvenile Fire Setters, and life member and past Treasurer of the South Region Director of the New Jersey Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators.
Mike also served our country in the Navy from 1974 to 1978 where he achieved the rank of Aviation Structural Mechanic Second Class.
Chief William D. Dukes, Sr.
Award Presented June 2015
Bill has been involved with the fire service community for the last forty eight years and is a third generation firefighter. It all started in 1966 in Camden County as a member of the Pine Hill Fire Department where he rose to Chief of Department in 1986 and held that title till 1991. During those years in Camden County he also served as Emergency Management Coordinator for Pine Hill, was with the County Fire Marshal’s Office, member of the County Fire Chief’s Association and on the executive board for seventeen years.
In 1991 Bill became the first career chief of the Mount Laurel Fire Department to which he held until 2006 when he retired. During his tenure he was instrumental in laying the ground work for what is today a very successful run combination department of some sixty volunteer and fifty career fire fighters.
Bill became a member of the Burlington County Fire Chief’s Association in 1991 and served on numerous committees including the original memorial site construction, the design and implementation of the current 500 communication system, and the five inch taskforce guideline. He was vice president and then president from 2001 – 2002.
From a county perspective Bill has been a certified Fire Service Instructor since 1980 teaching at the Burlington and Camden County Emergency Service Training Centers as well as lecturing both state and nationally on fire service topics. He has also served as a member of both the Burlington and Camden County Incident Management Teams.
Bill was an active member of the International Fire Chief’s Association from 1991 through 2006 and was the New Jersey Career Fire Chief’s President 2003 -2004.
Through his tireless efforts and dedication to duty, Chief William Dukes, Sr. has been given numerous citations and three valor awards from the fire service and is most deserving of the distinguished Life Time Achievement Award of Burlington County.
Emilio James "Libby" Liberatore
Award Presented October 2016
Chief Emilio James "Libby" Liberatore is honored and recognized posthumous as recipient of the Burlington County Emergency Services Lifetime Achievement Award. Chief Lieberatore, with 44 years of service, had demonstrated and exhibitied a true commitment tot he emergency services by contributing to the advancement and leadership of the emergency services in Burlington County, surrounding counties and state organizations. Chief Liberatore has aided and advanced the cause of responder operational effectiveness and safety throughout Burlington County and surrounding counties. Chief Liberator had served on many committees and workgroups pursuing the development and changes to policy, standards, guidelines and curriculum. Chief Liberator has clearly promoted public safety through persistence and innovation for the betterment of all facets of emergency services.
Patrick W. Bigoss
Award Presented October 2018
Patrick W. Bigoss joined the fire service in September 1975 as a member of Cliffwood Fire Company in Monmouth County. He remained active there until he moved to Kansas 12/31/1979.
Bigoss moved to Mount Laurel June 1981 and joined Fellowship Fire Company at that time. He remained an active firefighter until March 2015 and held the ranks from Lieutenant through Deputy Chief.
Bigoss joined the Burlington County Emergency Services Training Center (ESTC) as a Burlington County Institute of Technology (BCIT) part-time instructor staff in August 2001 and remained on until August 2017 at which time he went inactive for pension reasons. His area of focus was technical rescue, incident command classes (I-200, 300, 400), hazmat, CBRNE, and fire inspection. He also assisted Fire 1 classes both in classroom and hands on.
Bigoss was hired as a Senior Instructor with the ESTC May 2004 and remained on full-time staff until September 2008 at which time he joined Camden County College as the Fire Science program coordinator and full-time faculty. While working full-time he also became a hazmat tech and was a consistent responder supporting Hammer 15.
Bigoss was hired initially as a part-time fire inspector for Lumberton in April 2002 and was promoted to Fire Official in April 2010 until retirement June 30, 2018. He also served as Fire Official for Hainesport from September 2015 through December 2016 as part of a local shared services agreement.
Bigoss chaired the Burlington County Radio Manual committee from late 2005 through 2013 and am proud that we were able to update the Radio process with the formal adoption of the new manual in July 2007. We developed several key policies including "Storm Dispatch" and standardized grids and dispatch categories.
Bigoss served as a Deputy Fire Coordinator filling a vacancy in 2013 and was appointed chief coordinator Jan 2014 serving for two, two-year terms through December 2017.
While not specific to Burlington County Bigoss along with Steve Taylor collaborated to develop the state program for Code Update in fall 2008 as NJ moved to the IFC 2006 code in February 2009. They delivered approximately 75 day long classes statewide from Jan 2009 to June 2013. Beginning in 2014 he delivered Code Updates through 2017 across the state and in 2018 developed the Update program for the 2015 IFC and continue to deliver this program. He also successfully converted the State Fire Inspector program to an all online class and successfully delivered same to more than 150 students beginning in Fall 2014.
Richard Archer has been involved in Burlington County Emergency Services for almost a 50 years. He has many nicknames and talents. He is known to many of his friends as "Red" for the red hair he sported in his youth. Many of his younger friends refer to him as "Dick" or "Petee."
Richard is also a devoted family man, respected community leader, former professional football player who played two seasons for the New England Patriots and a retired pilot for Hess Oil Corporation. For many years, he donated his salary as a part-time paramedic to the American Heart Association. Richard is a pre-hospital care innovator, always willing to try new things throughout his career.
When his volunteer squad could no longer provide 24/7 basic life support ambulance service adequately to Mansfield Township, Richard had the courage to find alternative staffing solutions. Today, the Mansfield Township Ambulance Corps provides 24/7 coverage with career staffing and also has a shared services agreement with Springfield Township to provide weekday ambulance coverage to that community. Additionally, he has championed the cause to promote emergency medical services as a profession in Burlington County.
Listed below are some of Richard's contributions during 50 years of service to the residents of Burlington County:
Edward J. "Chubs" Hazynski
Edward J. Hazynski is known to most as "Chubs" or "Chubsy." Chubs was a founding member of the Hainesport Emergency Squad. He served as the first captain and was instrumental in the recruitment and retention of its members.
In the early years, he would spend his time teaching Crash Injury Management to Burlington County Police Departments and other departments throughout the state. Chubs was very active in the training of Burlington County EMTs and served as the Director of the Burlington County First Aid Academy.
He is only the second person in Burlington County to serve a squad in an active capacity for more than 50 years.
His half-century of emergency service highlights include:
Donald Fern Horner
Donald Homer has provided leadership for more than 30 years to one of the most successful volunteer emergency medical services organizations in Burlington County. The Deiran Emergency Squad is an organization with the unique reputation of never scratching a call and having the ability to field multiple ambulances regardless of the time of day.
Don has always ensured that his organization put the patient first. They have career staff during the day to ensure a quick response, still provide non-emergency ambulance transportation for their residents, have merged with the Riverside Emergency Squad to provide ambulance coverage to Riverside Township, sponsor basic and refresher EMT training programs for the region and have been a reliable source for mutual aid assistance to the riverfront squads.
Additionally, Don is a devoted family man, past volunteer firefighter, respected EMS educator and retired from a career in law enforcement as the Chief of the Riverside Police Department.
The highlights of his 40 years of emergency medical service to Burlington County include:
William H. Taylor
Bill Taylor may be gone but his lasting influences to deliver emergency services to the community can still be seen at the America Emergency Squad in Mount Holly. Prior to his death in 1985, Bill Taylor provided more than 42 years of emergency services to Burlington County. He was an educator best known for his extrication instruction, emergency services leader, role model, mentor, family man, and friend. He is still sorely missed by many. His lifetime contributions to emergency services will live on in this award.
Bill's Lifetime Achievements in Emergency Services include:
Howard C. Dickerson
Award Presented June 26, 2008
Howard Dickerson, known to many as “Capt.” Dickerson, was a leader in Burlington County EMS from 1957 until his death in 1996. His legacy continues today. As Captain of the Beverly – Edgewater Park Emergency Squad, he was always available to run calls day or night. “Capt.” took the extra time to teach upcoming EMTs the importance of taking their time and never missing a key symptom. Many times in his tenure he would follow up with the family of the patient the next day. He taught so many the importance of listening to the patient. Howard was an inspiration to many young people going into EMS.
During his tenure as Chief Burlington County Emergency Squad Disaster Coordinator, he was key in developing a dispatching system for County Squads through his hometown Beverly City Police Dispatchers. The desk operator would start the County Mutual Aid Plan and call in a second dispatcher to work the incident. This plan was used for years. Howard was always a supporter of the Coordinator Program
Beverly Emergency Squad
Captain 1957 - 1974
President 1981 & 1991
Engineer 1990 - 1991
Active Member 1953 – 1996
* Possibly the most Active in Squad History
Beverly Fire Company No 1.
Edgewater Park Police Department
Special Officer, Dispatcher
Chief Emergency Squad Disaster Coordinator 1965 – 1985
Assistant Coordinator 1985 – 1991
First Aid Council
Vice President 1959 – 60, 1966, 1990 – 91
Board of Directors 1957 – 58, 1962 – 65, 1988 – 90
Squad Captain Association
Burlington County First Aid Academy Instructor
American Red Cross Instructor
Outstanding dedication to Squad 1953 – 1968
Citizen of the Year 1980
Burlington County First Aid Council
Outstanding Service Award 1975, 1979
Edgewater Park Township
Proclamation on loss of his service 1996
William C. “Bill” Woolston
Award Presented 2009
When researching the history of First Aid in Burlington County one name consistently mentioned is Bill Woolston. William C. Woolston made a name for himself, in First Aid, serving many years as the lead Red Cross instructor for the County. He volunteered with the Red Cross for 32 years, the last 15 serving as chair of the First Aid program. At that time the Red Cross was the authority on First Aid. Predating the First Aid Academy, Mr. Woolston would travel to any squad that needed members trained and would often put those students in unique scenarios. Under Bill’s leadership, the County First Aiders were able to react to unusual situations in the field.
In the early 1960’s, Mr. Woolston was one of a small group of First Aid leaders chosen to be isolated in a bomb shelter if the United States was under attack. Those chosen would instruct First Aid to the public after an invasion. Mr. Woolston retired from Public Service Electric and Gas as a line inspector in 1972. During that time some of the PSE&G men were known for having advanced First Aid skills. They would assist at accidents and drowning calls along with being instructors during the First Aid Movement of the 1940’s.
Charles G. Kritz, Sr.
Award Presented July 1, 2010
Charles G. Kritz, Sr. has been involved in Burlington County Emergency Services since moving into Mount Laurel Township in 1969. Before then, he served four years as a volunteer in Philadelphia.
Charlie is a devoted family man who along with his wife Marie raised a daughter and son. His son, Charles, Jr., who was also a member of the Fellowship Fire Company, succumbed to cancer in 1998. Since that day, Charlie has perpetuated his son’s charity work through “Charlie’s Kitchen.” From Thanksgiving till Christmas, Charlie and his wife Marie collect food, toys, and money to donate to Catholic Charities Emergency Services, for the Diocese of Trenton.
In 1994 when the all volunteer ranks of Mount Laurel’s two squads were having difficulty providing daytime coverage to a rapidly growing township, Charlie was a member and leader of the township’s E.M.S. Commission that merged the Fellowship and Masonville Squads into the current career and volunteer Mount Laurel Township Emergency Medical Services.
Some of the highlights of Kritz service to Burlington County residents include: Captain of Fellowship First Aid Squad (1971-1986); Burlington County First Aid Academy, E.M.T. Coordinator (1974), Lead Instructor (1975); and Director (1975-1977); and American Heart Association, County Affiliate Faculty for C.P.R. instruction (40 years).
In 1982, Charlie became a Life Member of the Fellowship First Aid Squad. In 1986, he was made Captain Emeritus of the Squad. In 2002, E.M.S. Station 368 was dedicated as the “Charles G. Kritz, Sr. Station.”
Charlie continues to teach E.M.T. and C.P.R. classes at the Burlington County First Aid Academy and Mount Laurel E.M.S. He also serves as Volunteer Operations Chief at Mt. Laurel E.M.S.
Charles G. Kritz, Sr. has set the standard as a teacher, mentor, leader, trendsetter, and volunteer with over 42 years of service to Burlington County and Mount Laurel Township.
Dr. Richard Winfield Betts
Award Presented June 30, 2011
Dr. Betts graduated from Hahnemann Medical College of Philadelphia in 1935 and was dubbed “Director of Public Safety” in his college yearbook. He served with the 1st Army, 953 Field Artillery Unit in Europe as a battalion surgeon during five campaigns in World War II. He participated in the Normandy Invasion, the Battle of the Bulge and the liberation of Czechoslovakian concentration camps. Dr. Betts was promoted to Captain, received a Purple Heart and was also awarded the Bronze Medal. He worked with Burlington County Civil Defense after the war stressing preparedness and first aid survival training at the old Mount Holly Armory. He also managed many community and hospital preparedness exercises.
Dr. Betts was the first chief of the Emergency Unit at Burlington County Memorial Hospital (BCMH). In 1964, he initiated the concept of a 24 hour emergency ward at BCMH. It was the first fully staffed, around the clock, emergency ward in the State and only the second in the Country. He retired from there at the age of 65 in 1974. Dr. Betts also operated a family practice on Main Street in Medford where his office was set up similar to and had the capabilities of most emergency wards. Dr. Betts was known for never sending a bill for services to any patient he cared for in his private practice.
He joined the Medford Fire Department in 1936, and formed the Medford First Aid Squad. He proposed that Medford Township purchase an ambulance and actually drove Medford’s first ambulance from the factory in Toledo, Ohio home to Medford. Known as the “ambulance chaser,” Dr. Betts would respond to calls in his private car and would also ride as backup with policeman when Medford’s Police Department was a one man force. Dr. Betts also served as a Burlington County police surgeon and was an assistant to the County’s Medical Examiner’s Office.
Dr. Betts is credited with being the prime mover in establishing a Paramedic Program for Burlington County at the BCMH. It was the first all volunteer-Mobile Intensive Care Unit in the State, and was often observed educating first aiders in the emergency ward. Dr. Betts instructed first aid and EMT while overseeing the Burlington County First Aid Academy. He was noted for his dynamic and graphic demonstrations during lectures. He instructed countless American Heart Association CPR and First Aid classes to boy scouts, camp life guards, and community groups. He was an Eagle Scout and active with the Boy Scouts. Also, he worked the National American Heart Association to upgrade the Shaffer Prone Method of CPR into the more recent method of CPR that we used until recently. Dr. Betts also served as the president and secretary of the Burlington County Medical Society.
Dr. Betts worked throughout his life with many state and professional organizations to improve, change or implement new ideas which would advance the aims of EMS or improve safety, often using unorthodox methods to make his points. He knew the value of pre-hospital care, while supporting and praising first aiders for all they do without being paid.
Dr. Richard Betts died December 30th, 1993 in Maine.
Public Safety Recipient
JAMES K. WUJCIK
Award Presented July 1, 2010
A former volunteer firefighter with the Moorestown Fire Department, James K. Wujcik never lost sight of his fire service beginnings and commitment to public safety after taking public office as a Burlington County Freeholder in 1997. Wujcik first served as Freeholder Director in 2000 and again in 2005-2007.
During his 12-year tenure on the Freeholder Board until December 31, 2009, Wujcik oversaw the Department of Public Safety. In that capacity, he directed construction of the new state-of-the-art Emergency Services Training Center, upgrades and renovations to the existing burn buildings, a new burn building with five propane training simulators, and the 9-1-1 emergency communications system. Wujcik also saw to it that a new flashover trainer and new air system for the training grounds was funded for 2010.
Wujcik led the replacement of the county’s Emergency Management Communications System – a $30 million project which addressed the safety and welfare of every resident of Burlington County. The new radio system, which included 17 towers, came on line in 2004 and provided total interoperability for municipal and county agencies which allowed police, fire and EMS units to talk to each other over one radio. Under Mr. Wujcik’s leadership, the County piloted a new 9-1-1 caller ID program which enables dispatchers to track the location of emergency calls made from cell phones.
Wujcik served on the Delran Township Council for four years (1993-97) and was a member of the organizing committee for the newly-created Burlington County Alliance for Action, supporting economic development in the Delaware River/Route 130 Corridor and throughout all of Burlington County.
A life-long resident of Burlington County, and Regional President with Sovereign Bank, Wujcik has served on many civic and charitable boards, including Samaritan Hospice; the Love Thy Neighbor Foundation (a faith-based initiative supporting children-at-risk and single mothers), The Family “Y” of Burlington County, the Advisory Board to the World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia, the Small Business Advisory Board to the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, the Lights of Liberty, Burlington County College Foundation, Mount Holly Rotary, Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Burlington County, and the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia where he is currently Chairman.
Wujcik and his wife, Carol, have three children and reside in Cinnaminson.
George Jackson Jr.
Award Presented June 28, 2012
George has been involved in the First Aid community since 1967, starting out as a Volunteer Aide at Underwood Hospital in Woodbury, NJ and a Lifeguard & Water Safety instructor for the American Red Cross. He joined the Tabernacle Rescue Squad in July of 1973, worked his way up to EMS Chief wherein he served for 25 years and now holds the title of “Captain Emeritus”, in charge of rescue, re-hab, marine and special operations. In 1991 and again in 2002, George received a proclamation from the Mayor of Tabernacle Township for his distinguished service to the residents of Tabernacle Township.
George presented “Mock Crash” high school programs throughout Camden and Burlington County High Schools. In 1994 he received a commendation from the Camden County Freeholders for these programs. The Burlington County “200 Club” awarded George with their Distinguished Service Award in 1995, for his many years of service in EMS. They also awarded him the Burlington County “200 Club” Honor / Valor Award, along with the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Award, in 1998, for the rescue of an elderly woman trapped underwater in a car. He jumped in the water, entered the overturned vehicle and maintained her airway while working to free her. The vehicle was submerged for 45 minutes in neck-high, icy water until rescue crews could assist him in her removal.
He currently serves as a Burlington County Deputy EMS Coordinator and was part of a team of 26 Ambulances that responded to the Twin Towers in New York on September 11, 2011.
George has displayed a deep commitment to furthering the cause of emergency services through his leadership in the past and the present in Burlington County. He has been an EMS Innovator balancing supplying his area with Ems, Rescue, Rehab, Forest Fire Protection and Emergency Management Services. His creative approach to building a new Emergency Services Building to be shared by all disciplines demonstrates this. He has gone above and beyond through his commitment to the ESAB, IST, State Forestry, Tabernacle Squad, as a County EMS Deputy Coordinator.
Richard “Skip” Clayton Jr.
Award Presented June 27, 2013
Richard Clayton Jr., known to many as “Skip,” has been a leader in the Burlington County Emergency Medical Services for many years. Skip joined the Browns Mills Emergency Squad in 1954. He also served on the Juliustown Squad, County Lakes Squad, and even started his own organization called the Thunderbird Rescue.
Skip was very active in many of the Burlington County Squads. He was an instructor at the Burlington County First Aid Academy and specialized in extrication done the old fashioned way with hand tools and simple power tools. He spent many hours showing these trades to new students and retraining first aiders. Skip’s main intent for his Thunderbird group was to assist area squads with training. This training was done at a time when instructors would never consider being paid for their hours of time. He was quite a character who could make one shake their head at times, but his skills and knowledge of equipment to treat patients made him a leader in first aid equipment and training. His extensive knowledge of hand skills to make first aid equipment is a lost art in today’s times of fancy equipment and medical terminology.
Skip willing accepted and faithfully served on virtually each and every committee and aspect of the Burlington County Emergency Medical Services. He was an innovator, teacher, and leader in the field of hand skills and first aid equipment during the time when many squads were in their prime.
Skip lives in his longtime house on Lakehurst Road in Brown Mills with his wife Nancy, who was also a squad member. He was also a long time police dispatcher for Pemberton Township.
Listed below are some of Skip’s many contributions to the residents of Burlington County: