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The Association's Annual Meeting took place on Thursday September 15, 2022 at the Wildwood Convention Center, Wildwood, New Jersey. President William Smith kicked off the meet- ing at 1:00 p.m. The meeting was well attended. There was a full agenda for this meeting as Scholarship Awards and Valor Awards were presented. In addition, there were elections for the Presidential Offices and Trustees.

The 2022 Valor Award recipients are from the Secaucus Fire Department. Lieutenant Victor Papone, III, Fire Fighters Donald Cieciuch and Eric Kosky, and City of Passaic Lieutenant Joseph Ivanicki were awarded Medal of Valor awards for their courageous acts. In addition, Certificates of Valor were given to each recipient.

The 2022 Unit Citation Award went to the Willingboro Station 161 Fire Department, Willingboro, New Jersey for their bravery and rescue. Trustee Chairman Vincent Corsaro read a description of both the Valor Award incidents and the Unit Citation courageous act and made the presentations to the winners. Congratulations to all!

The 2022 Scholarship award winners were Michaela Madonna of Wall Township and Bailey Fearon of Secaucus. Trustee Chairman Vincent Corsaro presented the Scholarship Awards, along with Alina Fayerman of California Causality Insurance Company. Through the auspices of Alina, California Causality funded one of our Scholarships this year and we are very thankful for their part- nership with our Association.

The Annual Memorial Service was conducted by Anthony Saranchak who read off the names of our members that passed away since our 2021 meeting. We thank Chaplin Saranchak for his

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kind words and reading.

Southern Trustee Glenn Roemmich sang the Lord's Prayer Hymn. Our Memorial Cross remained lit for the entire service to honor our departed members.

Elections. The slate of officers was read off by Secretary C. Assenheimer.

President: Anthony Correia (Burlington Township) First Vice President: Frank Walters (Secaucus)

Up to the meeting time we did not have anyone interested in running for the office of Second Vice President. During this time in the meeting Chief Robert Morris (Ocean) stated that he would be interested. His information was taken down to be vetted. (It is noted that at our October 26, 2022 meeting, Chief Morris was appointed to the office of Second Vice President).

We had both Central Region Trustee offices open this year, one due the resignation of Scott Eskwitt and the other due to the passing of Bob Burns.

Art Hayducka and Ryan Daughton submitted letters of interest for the Central Region Trustee positions. John Hayowyk submitted a letter of interest for the Northern Region Trustee position, replacing Association past President Ron Stokes who was filling that open Trustee position.

Nominations from the floor were opened and there were none, so nominations were closed. Those present at the meeting Motioned and approved for the Secretary to cast one ballot to elect the slate of officers.

Association past President Lawrence Wood installed the newly elected slate of Officers.

President A. Correia stated that he is honored to serve as our President.

First Vice President F. Walters stated that he looks forward to working with our membership.

The keynote speaker was Eriks Gabliks. Superintendent of the National Fire Academy, Emmittsburg, Maryland. Gabliks gave a detailed review of what the National Fire Academy has to offer in the way of in person classes, online courses and training. We were honored to have Gabliks speak at our meeting as he is from New Jersey and brings great information to the New Jersey fire service. Thank you Eriks for your timely information!

Volunteer Firemen's Insurance Services. I would be remiss not mentioning our long-time partner V.F.I.S. and our friends, Joe Giorgi and Bryan Wallace. As you may know, both Joe and Bryan are constant attendees at our meetings, in addition to providing the meeting refreshments for our membership. In addition, they give the background on the Walter Fortnum Scholarship Fund that was started by V.F.I.S. some years back. Mr. Fortnum was a giant in the insurance industry and the fire service, so it goes without saying that keeping his legacy alive with a scholarship in his honor makes a lot of sense! We took a collection at our meeting to keep the Fortnum Scholarship Fund "making" money so that it can be awarded to worthy students each year. It goes without say- ing, Thank You, Joe and Bryan, for your assistance to our Association, year after year. We truly appreciate it, and it goes without saying that we treasure your friendship.

Just before the conclusion of our meeting, President A. Correia and First Vice President F. Walters presented past President William Smith with his Ceremonial Trumpet and thanked him for his tenure as President. Bill had a tough two years as he had to deal with the COVID-19 Crisis forc- ing many of our meetings to be held online. He got through it and has kept our Association afloat! Bill was given a round of applause by the audience. We wish you well Bill! 

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