Awards went out to four employees of the Fort Myers Beach Fire Control District, while a plaque was given for years of service at the Beach Fire Board meeting Tuesday, June 18.
Battalion Chief Pete Miceli, Capt. Chris Morgani, Andres Vila, Jake Lamb and Tammy Peacock were all honored during a presentation at Town Hall. Morgani was named Officer of the Year, Vila was selected as Paramedic of the Year, Lamb was chosen as Fire Fighter of the Year and Peacock was selected Civilian of the Year. Miceli was presented a plaque for 25 years of service at Beach Fire.
After the awards ceremony, Fire Commissioner Ted Schindler applauded the "family attitude" of the district employees and commented on the overall cohesiveness between the fire fighters, paramedics, officers and administrative staff.
The Fort Myers Beach Fire Control District passed out four awards last week. Along with Chief Darren White (far left) and Assistant Fire Chief Tom May (far right), the award winners included Beach Fire administrator Tammy Peacock, Civilian of the Year; Fire Fighter/Paramedic Jake Lamb, named Fire Fighter of the Year; Capt. Chris Morgani, named Officer of the Year; and Fire Fighter/Paramedic Andres Vila, selected as Paramedic of the Year.
"Morale appears to be improving," he said.
The commissioners had just finished listening to a positive audit presentation by Tuscan & Company's Jeff Tuscan, who reported no deficiencies within internal control and no instances of noncompliance.
"It's an excellent report as far as comments go," he said.
The Beach Fire Control District may be passed the bad blood stage between personnel and administration now that Beach Fire Chief Darren White has settled into his role and Assistant Fire Chief Tom May has taken over some of White's previous dual roles after his hiring in mid-March. No negative remarks were stated during union representative reports, a common occurrence when former Chief Mike Becker (now suing the district and unions due to their handling of his departure from office) was the lead man.
White gave praised to Miceli, a man who began his fire fighter /paramedic career in Cape Coral and came over to the Beach in 1988. Miceli was promoted to lieutenant in 2002 and captain in 2004 before being elevated to battalion chief in 2006.
"I have had the privilege of working with Pete as my officer," he said. "He has been a real key to the department. I would like to congratulate him for the years working with us."
Here is what Beach Fire Chief Darren White said to each of the award winners at the presentations:
-- Capt. Chris Morgani - Officer of the Year
"The reason that Capt. Morgani was nominated for Officer of the Year was because he is hard working and dedicated to making this department better. He consistently displays a great attitude with positive reenforcement for all alike. He is willing to go above and beyond when needed. He is willing to help out where needed. Whether it is ordering supplies for the Engines or planning some training for the shift, he is a real go-getter.
"Capt. Morgani is a great instructor, mentor and an outstanding example to his crew members and Fort Myers Beach Fire Department. He has the ability to make great decisions in stressful situations and is always more than willing to give his time to help others. He shows pride, integrity, passion and is dedicated to making this department better.
"Since his promotion, Capt. Morgani has shown increased ability to make good decisions, while being less persuaded to remain status quo. This, in itself, is evident of a growing leader stepping up above and beyond his competitors and is deserving of this recognition."
-- Fire Fighter/Paramedic Andres Vila - Paramedic of the Year
"Fire Fighter/Paramedic Andres Vila was nominated for Paramedic of the Year because he is always proactive and diligent about his duties as a paramedic. Andy always displays a great attitude and has a very caring and kind bedside manner with patients. Vila carries this over to his paramedic skills and the people of the community that he treats. He treats all patients with the same respect no matter what the call is.
"Paramedic Vila always volunteers to help out with training our new paramedics even though he is not a P2. This shows the caliber of person and caliber of paramedic that he is. He is always willing to help out anyone and train anyone or offer anything they need help with. He is humble. He doesn't claim to know it all, but is always willing to learn and make himself a better fire fighter and paramedic as well as those around him.
"Paramedic Vila has a great attitude in which he always gets the job done no matter what. He is one of those people you wish you had 10 of because you know things would get done, and they would be done right. These are just a few reasons he is the recipient of the Paramedic of the Year award."
-- Fire Fighter/Paramedic Jake Lamb - Firefighter of the Year
"Fire Fighter/Paramedic Jake Lamb is an above-average employee, and the department is lucky to have him as a driver engineer. Fire Fighter Lamb always takes extra care of his engine from cleaning to fixing issues with it. He does not settle for the standard or average; he wants his equipment better than when the last time he used it. Fire Fighter Lamb frequently volunteers to assist his Captain with anything, including shift manning, run reports and general station maintenance. Fire Fighter Lamb doubles as a Fire Officer 1, when the staffing requires his experience. He accepts that responsibility with enthusiasm. Fire Fighter Lamb is the one of the best employees we have and is deserving of this recognition."
-- Tammy Peacock - Civilian of the Year
"Tammy Peacock was nominated for Civilian of the Year because she is always willing to go above and beyond what her job entails. Tammy always makes herself available when members need things, such as copies of forms, insurance information, uniforms, office supplies, or anything else that members may need from administration. If it was not for Tammy, the administration office would not run as smooth as it does. This is a huge responsibility that she takes on and makes it seem easy. Her professionalism and politeness toward members of this department and to residents of this community are what makes her a great nominee for Citizen of the Year."