Justice Institute conferring honourary degree on Langley Township fire chief

Langley Township's top firefighter has been in the profession for about 38 years.

  • Jan. 13, 2017 7:00 a.m.

The Justice Institute of B.C. is presenting an honourary degree to Township fire chief Stephen Gamble.

Langley Township’s fire chief will receive an honourary law degree during a special ceremony at the Justice Institute of B.C. next month.

The JIBC will confer the honour on Stephen Gamble, a 38-year firefighter veteran.

While he’s currently the Township’s top fire official, he’s worked in many facets of public safety.

“It is our privilege to recognize Mr. Gamble’s longstanding commitment to the safety of our communities with this honorary degree,” said Dr. Michel Tarko, JIBC President and CEO. ”From his start as a volunteer firefighter to leader of the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs, he has demonstrated dedication to public service and an unwavering desire to keep the public safe. He is the epitome of the leadership we aim to inspire in our students at JIBC.”

Gamble entered the fire service in 1978 as a volunteer firefighter with the City of Port Coquitlam where he was hired as a full-time career firefighter in 1980. He was promoted to assistant fire chief of operations and emergency preparedness coordinator in 1996, acting fire chief for the department in 2001, and the full time fire chief/emergency coordinator for the City of Port Coquitlam in 2003. He became Township ofire chief in 2011.

He has more than 12 years of experience as an adjunct instructor with the Justice Institute of British Columbia, and holds certifications including a certificate in Municipal Management from Capilano University, a bachelor’s degree in justice and public leadership with Simon Fraser University, and a fellowship designation with the Institute of Fire Engineers.

In 2012, he became the first B.C. fire chief in 20 years to be elected president of the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs (CAFC), only the fourth fire chief from British Columbia to hold the position in the organization’s century-long history. He served in that role until 2014 and in 2015 received the distinction of CAFC Full-time Fire Chief of the Year award.

Gamble also served as the president of the Fire Chiefs’ Association of British Columbia from 2007 to 2011.

The degree will be presented at the upcoming convocation. The 2017 Winter Convocation ceremony, which will recognize more than 375 graduates who have completed certificates, diplomas and degrees at JIBC, will be held Feb. 9 at the New Westminster Campus.

The JIBC provides training for justice and public safety professionals including firefighting, policing, corrections, probations, paramedics, emergency responsers, sheriffs, and more.

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