NFPA honors former president with award in his name

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Thursday, July 17, 2014

In recognition of outstanding leadership, vision and commitment to reducing fire loss through advocacy, the NFPA honored outgoing President Jim Shannon with the first James M. Shannon Advocacy Medal. The special honor was presented to Shannon at the opening general session of NFPA’s Conference & Expo in Las Vegas in June.

The award was established to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the fire loss problem through advocacy, the NFPA said. The Medal Selection Committee considers several criteria, including the impact of the individual’s efforts toward NFPA’s mission, reducing fire loss, and the extent to which the efforts are collaborative beyond NFPA.

Shannon concluded his 12-year tenure as NFPA president in June with an exceptional record of advocacy to reduce fire loss, the NFPA said. The group’s new president is Jim Pauley, formerly Schneider Electric’s senior VP of external affairs and government relations, who took the reins July 1.

The NFPA said that under Shannon’s leadership, the organization considerably advanced its mission of fire safety, better protecting the general public and members of the fire service.

Shannon spearheaded the Coalition for Fire-Safe Cigarettes, which quickly led to every state passing legislation requiring that cigarettes meet a specific fire safety standard. In collaboration with the fire service and others, this initiative is expected to save hundreds of lives, including the lives of firefighters who are at risk every time they respond to a cigarette-related fire.

Shannon also intensified NFPA’s work to advocate for mandating home fire sprinklers in all new one- and two-family homes, another critical safeguard to enhance public safety and better protect the fire service.