NAPERVILLE, Ill. — The Naperville Fire Department is proud to announce its entire chief officer staff has achieved or is actively working toward the Chief Fire Officer designation from the Center for Public Safety Excellence and The Commission on Professional Credentialing. This prestigious designation recognizes excellence among fire service personnel at the rank of battalion chief or higher. It is granted by the same agency through which the Naperville Fire Department is accredited for achieving high standards in emergency response and public safety services.
Bureau Chief Phil Giannattasio, Bureau Chief Thomas Moran and Division Chief Scott Salela all recently were recognized for achieving Chief Fire Officer credentials. Recently retired Bureau Chief James Kubinski also achieved this designation during his tenure with the Naperville Fire Department. The department’s top two leaders, Chief Mark Puknaitis and Deputy Chief Amy Scheller, earned Chief Fire Officer status in 2010 and 2017, respectively. Newly appointed Bureau Chief John Sergeant is actively working toward attaining the designation.
“The Chief Fire Officer Designation awarded by the Center for Public Safety Excellence is an achievement that only a small percentage of all fire agency professionals have been able to attain. The level of detail observed by national assessors takes into consideration statewide certifications, formal education, experience in rank and other organizational responsibilities, and accomplishments made by the Chief Fire Officer applicant,” Puknaitis said. “I am so proud to lead a department where 100% of my chief officers have either already attained or are actively working on their submittals for this high-caliber status. It truly exemplifies the degree of excellence in our personnel, all of whom strive for nothing less than the best for all our residents.”
Chief Fire Officers Puknaitis, Scheller, Giannattasio, Moran, Salela and Kubinski are among 1,494 professional fire service leaders in the U.S. and Canada who have achieved this designation. They are part of an expert chief officer team here in Naperville with a strong focus on professional development.
“This designation was a point of pride, and achieving it fulfilled both a personal goal and a goal set forth in the department’s strategic plan,” Giannattasio said. “To say the entire senior staff of the Naperville Fire Department has been professionally credentialed as Chief Fire Officers is an accomplishment that truly deserves to be celebrated.”
Fire department leaders achieve Chief Fire Officer status by proving their achievements in seven areas: education, experience, trainings and certifications, professional contributions and recognitions, professional memberships and affiliations, technical competence and community involvement. Their qualifications are comprehensively reviewed by a panel of their peers before they are awarded the designation, which lasts three years. Maintaining Chief Fire Officer status requires recipients to show continued professional growth and community contributions, while adhering to a strict code of professional conduct.