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Canine handler nominated as deputy state fire marshal of the year

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Canine handler nominated as Deputy State Fire Marshal of the Year

Senior Deputy State Fire Marshal Jeff Thomas has been chosen as the 2019 Deputy State Fire Marshal of the Year for the Lower Eastern Regional Office.

CAMRBRIDGE — Senior Deputy State Fire Marshal Jeff Thomas has been chosen as the 2019 Deputy State Fire Marshal of the Year for the Lower Eastern Regional Office. The Lower Eastern Region consists of Dorchester, Wicomico, and Somerset counties. He will join other Deputy State Fire Marshals from throughout the state, one of who will be chosen to receive the 2019 James C. Robertson Deputy State Fire Marshal of the Year Award.

DSFM Thomas was nominated by retired Deputy Chief State Fire Marshal Joseph Flanagan, who was his immediate commander for 2019. During the past year, DSFM Thomas handled a total of 32 investigations, the highest in the Lower Eastern Regional Office. With an average of 4.25 inspections per month, he completed a total of 51 inspections.

Flanagan emphasized Thomas’ nomination was not based on statistics alone, but on his work ethic and his ability to adapt to the needs of the Agency. Thomas is an accelerant canine handler and has been requested to assist with fire investigations all over the state. Flanagan recognized Thomas as an exceptional handler, along with his canine partner, “Billie.” Flanagan stated, ”DSFM Thomas and K9 Billie are a vital tool in the agencies fight against arson. Never is there a time DSFM Thomas is not ready and willing to assist when needed.”

Thomas was recognized for his positive attitude as well as assisting others throughout the office. During the year, there were several times Deputy State Fire Marshals in the Lower Eastern Regional Office were asked to either cover shifts within the region or cover shifts outside their region of responsibility. Thomas was always willing to help, even though the assignment may not have been convenient for him. Thomas put the agency mission first and got the job done.

During the year 2019, DSFM Thomas was an exceptional employee and received an Exceeds Standards on his yearly evaluation. Jeff is a good example of what all Deputy State Fire Marshals should strive to be — committed, dedicated and professional, stated Flanagan.

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