National fire medal awarded to CQ Assistant Commissioner
THE AUSTRALIAN Fire Service Medal is awarded to true leaders of the firefighting community, and in 2020, Assistant Commissioner Central Region Steve Barber is one of six Queenslanders to receive the honour.
Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke said it was reassuring to have somebody of such a high calibre lead operations in the region.
“Our community is, sadly, no stranger to bushfires, storms and floods,” Mr O’Rourke said.
“When Mother Nature strikes, which she does more often than anyone would like, we have been in the safest hands with AC Barber.
“He stood by us through the Gracemere fire in 2018 then Cobraball in November, showing great leadership and compassion.”
Mr O’Rourke said he was thrilled to see the Assistant Commissioner’s service recognised at a national level.
“AC Barber has led a number of state, interstate and international emergency responses, including deployments to the United States, Singapore and even Antarctica,” he said.
“As a state, we can be very proud of not only his achievements, but all six Queenslanders receiving this prestigious medal.
“They have a combined service history of more than 240 years, making Queenslander a better, safer place to call home.”
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) Commissioner Greg Leach said AC Barber spent more than 35 years serving communities in Tasmania and Queensland with both Fire and Rescue and Rural Fire Services.
“While all walking different paths within QFES, one thing that all AFSM recipients have showcased is dedication and leadership through community education, operational response, training and safety and wellbeing,” the Commissioner said.
“Mr Barber has been a catalyst for positive cultural and behavioural change, particularly during his time leading Northern and Central Region.
“Someone who always conducts himself with the upmost professionalism and integrity, Mr Barber is a worthy recipient of the AFSM.”
Other AFSM recipients include Captain Robert Price, Station Officer Gregory Duncan, First Officer Patrick Kraut, firefighter Rodger Sambrooks and First Officer Bevan Love.
All six medallists were honoured at QFES’ annual Australia Day Achievement Awards ceremony.