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American Legion names Ennis as Firefighter of the Year

MADISON – Each year, American Legion, Post 229 in Madison selects a first responder from both Madison Police Department and Madison Fire and Rescue Department who demonstrates consistent, exemplary service on the job.

Captain Richard Ennis was named 2018 City of Madison Firefighter of the Year. Tom McKinney, who serves as Americanism Committee Chair for Post 229, presented the award to Ennis. Mayor Paul Finley and Madison City Council members witnessed the acknowledgment during a council meeting in December.

David Bailey, Chief of Madison Fire and Rescue Department, submitted Ennis’ citation. “Richard Ennis has served the citizens of Madison for 12 years. He works tirelessly late into the evening each shift to complete his assigned duties and to address the numerous projects that he has volunteered to tackle,” Bailey said.

During 2018, Ennis proved invaluable to the department’s training division and their efforts “to mature our reporting and learning management platforms,” Bailey said. “Ennis routinely provides research results with all the information needed to make educated decisions.”

In addition, Ennis volunteers to teach department classes and “performs beyond expectations to make sure his students are getting the best training possible. Richard is the department’s ‘go-to person’ on Emergency Medical System components, such as equipment, forms, medications and supplies,” Bailey said.

In summer 2018, Ennis completed an associate’s degree in fire science from Columbia Southern. “After serving his fellow firefighters and citizens all day, every evening he studied for this degree program,” Bailey said. “One more example of leading by example is that he refused to do his classwork before all of his duties for the shift were completed.”

Ennis served several months as Acting Captain in 2018. He continued the vital work to sustain strong teams for safety of residents. “He spread his positive outlook throughout our organization,” Bailey said.

In October 2018, Ennis was promoted from Driver to Captain; he continues to lead Engine 1’s crew on A-Shift. “We’re fortunate to have Captain Richard Ennis serve Madison Fire and Rescue and the citizens of Madison,” Bailey said.

In other awards, American Legion honored Police Officer Jeremy McKinney as City of Madison Officer of the Year.

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