Group Captain Phillip Baer, APM, AFSM, Superintendent Andrew Dillon, Group Captain Peter Holding, AFSM and Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke stand in front of an RFS sign.
Group Captain Phillip Baer, APM, AFSM, Superintendent Andrew Dillon, Group Captain Peter Holding, AFSM and Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke.

The Member for Cootamundra has congratulated the South West Slopes Zone Senior Management Team in Harden today on receiving a NSW RFS Internal Bravery and Service Award.

The unit were recognised with a Commissioner’s Certificate of Commendation for the work of the Senior Management Team over many years.

Steph Cooke said the award was well-deserved by the unit.

“For many years the South West Slopes Zone Senior Management has undertaken the work of the RFS with incredible bravery and professionalism,” Ms Cooke said.

“Their skill and selflessness deserves to be celebrated and recognised. Congratulations on this well-earned accolade.”

Superintendent Andrew Dillon, District Manager of the RFS South West Slopes Zone said he was very pleased with the award.

“It’s fantastic to see our 16 Group Officers recognised for their work over many years, not only in firefighting but in planning, decision making, risk management and consultation to ensure our volunteer firefighters are well resourced and well prepared to protect the community.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has restricted our ability to get together and celebrate this acknowledgement, but when restrictions ease we will be getting together to celebrate this achievement, and we hope there will be a more formal presentation in Sydney.”

Here is their Official Citation:

Commissioner’s Certificate of Commendation (Unit), South West Slopes Zone Senior Management Team Area Western

The South West Slopes Zone (SWSZ) Senior Management Team (SMT) have demonstrated outstanding leadership and decision making as they advocate for volunteers within the SWSZ.

The SWSZ SMT developed a Charter with clear expectations to be followed by all members of the SMT.

This Charter focuses on four workgroups, consisting of a number of SMT members, functioning alongside the SMT to investigate and make decisions and or recommendations for consideration and adoption.

These workgroups consist of Business Management, Operations, Community Risk Management and Membership. Each Workgroup has a standing agenda and welcomes ideas and approaches to improve service delivery.

This structure has provided a platform for SMT members to investigate opportunities for improvement, understand financial positions, allocate resources and explore new approaches.

Since the adoption of the SWSZ SMT Charter SMT meetings are well attended with progress made at each meeting due to the efforts of each workgroup leading up to SMT meetings.

The Workgroups have provided enhanced opportunities for staff and senior volunteers to work together on specific projects to benefit all members in the SWSZ.

The utilisation of four workgroups within the Charter has provided SMT members with a greater opportunity to engage with brigade field officers on a wider variety of topics.

This has provided a greater understanding, amongst brigades, of the direction of the NSW Rural Fire Service including capital improvement priorities and advances in operational procedure.

Their commitment and achievement is beyond what is normally expected by SMT members. The South West Slopes Zone Senior Management Team are worthy recipients of the Commissioner’s Certificate of Commendation (Unit).