South Lake Tahoe fire chief receives award from California Fire Chiefs Association | TahoeDailyTribune.com

South Lake Tahoe fire chief receives award from California Fire Chiefs Association

SLTFR Chief Jeff Meston (left) poses for a photo with Alameda County Fire Department Chief John Walsh, who presented the award to Meston.

The honors and accolades just keep coming for South Lake Tahoe Fire Rescue Chief Jeff Meston.

Earlier this month, the city announced that Meston had received the Ed Bent Training Excellence Award in recognition of being the Outstanding Fire Instructor of the Year. He received the award at the California Training Officers Symposium in Fresno, California, in mid-November.

Each year during the California Training Officers' Fall Training Symposium a fire service instructor is presented with the Ed Bent Training Excellence Award in recognition of being the "outstanding fire instructor of the year." The award was created many years ago on behalf of Ed Bent for his contribution as a founding father of statewide training and curriculum for the California Fire Service, according to a press release from the city.

As the state fire marshal, Bent established statewide policies and programs for new firefighters, including a fire academy and certification system. Bent wrote training texts for dealing with hazardous materials, building collapses and other safety issues. He taught classes for firefighting agencies in Western states and spoke at seminars for professional groups, including the Western Fire Chiefs Association and the National Fire Protection Association.

Following his retirement in 1983, the California Training Officers Section of the California Fire Chiefs Association, where Meston serves as the president elect, established the Ed Bent Training Excellence Award, which is given annually to top firefighting instructors in the state.

"As always, I am not surprised chief Meston was nominated and chosen for this award," South Lake Tahoe City Manager Nancy Kerry stated in a press release. "Chief Meston has a rich history as an instructor, both with those in the fire service and citizens, throughout his career. Under his leadership, South Lake Tahoe Fire Rescue developed the city's STAT program which trains our local citizenry on disaster response. He's an exemplary leader and trainer and we are fortunate to serve alongside him here at the city. Please join me in congratulating chief Meston!"