Member for Kiama Gareth Ward MP has today announced that Group Captain Christopher Nolan from Oak Flats Brigade (Illawarra Zone) of NSW Rural Fire Service has been awarded an Australian Fire Services Medal.
As part of the 2022 Australia Day Honours, the Australian Fire Service Medal was awarded to eight members from the NSW Rural Fire Service as well as three Fire and Rescue NSW firefighters.
Mr Ward congratulated Group Captain Christopher Nolan from Oak Flats Brigade (Illawarra Zone) on receiving an Australian Fire Services Medal for his service to our local Kiama community.
“Over the past year our emergency services personnel have again faced significant challenges and have worked tirelessly to help to protect our local communities right across our region and our State during incredibly difficult conditions,” Mr Ward said.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to recognise those who have gone above and beyond, often putting their lives on the line to save others. They have responded to floods, fires, drownings, the COVID-19 response and more recently, the threat of tsunami.
Mr Ward said that this is a wonderful opportunity to recognise those who have gone above and beyond, often putting their lives on the line.
“Group Captain Christopher Nolan is a credit to the NSW Rural Fire Service and our local community and a most worthy recipient of this honour,” Mr Ward concluded.
Group Captain Christopher Ronald Nolan – Oak Flats Brigade, Illawarra Zone:
Group Captain Christopher Nolan joined the Oak Flats Rural Fire Brigade in 1986, in the same year taking on the role of Equipment Officer, which he held until 2003. After stepping down as Equipment Officer, he continued to take an active role in the Brigade, fulfilling the roles of Deputy Captain, Senior Deputy Captain, Captain, Brigade Health and Safety Officer and Permit Officer.
Group Captain Nolan is committed to the development of younger members, culminating in the cadet program which he instigated in 2009. The program continues to run, two Sundays a month, taking in cadets as young as 14 years of age. While the Cadet program focuses on training to create better and more skilful firefighters, he ensures the program also embraces cultural and social aspects to help shape younger members into contributing members of society.
At the end of the program, Group Captain Nolan facilitates for these cadets to transition back into the local brigades as well trained firefighters. To ensure the ongoing success of the Cadet program, he has taken on the roles of Brigade Management Member, Brigade President, Cadet Coordinator and Brigade Training Officer. The results achieved through the program are inspiring and their results in both State and National competitions are ever improving.
In 2017, Mr Nolan was elected by his peers to the rank of Group Captain, and in 2018 was awarded life membership to the Oak Flats Brigade. His 34 years of exemplary service to the NSW RFS in the Illawarra has been recognised through the receipt of the 30-year service medal and the National Medal.