The Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI) has 11 members that represent a cross-section of the fire and emergency service, including fire departments, city and county management, labor, standards development organizations, and the U.S. Department of Defense. CFAI holds public hearings at the CPSE Excellence Conference each spring and at the International Association of Fire Chief’s Fire Rescue International Conference each summer to review agencies applying for accredited status. Learn more about the individuals that graciously volunteer their time to overseeing accreditation.
Steve Dongworth is fire chief for the Calgary Fire Department a CFAI accredited agency. He joined the department in 1992 and has held the positions of deputy chief of Community Standards, Recruitment and Training; Operations; Community Services; Administration; and Emergency Management.
Chief Dongworth has completed a number of university-level management certificate programs in health and safety; general management and strategic management and has received a Masters Certificate in Municipal Learning.
Steve Dirksen is fire chief of the Fargo, North Dakota, Fire Department, a CFAI accredited agency. He began his fire service career in 1989 with the Rock Valley, Iowa, Fire Department and then joined the Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Fire Department where he moved up through the ranks to Battalion Chief until he was appointed fire chief in Fargo in 2011.
Chief Dirksen holds a bachelor’s degree in Management and a master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Sioux Falls and is a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer program.
Chief Dirksen earned his designation as Chief Fire Officer in 2014.
Thomas Breyer is the Director of Fire and EMS Operations with the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF). Before starting with the IAFF, Thomas was a firefighter-paramedic with the City of Forest Park Fire Department in Ohio, eventually promoting to a lieutenant, and then the department’s EMS coordinator. As the IAFF’s Director of Fire and EMS Operations, Thomas provides direction to a talented and dedicated group of GIS analysts, data analysts, and subject matter experts who perform response, risk, and demand analysis for fire and EMS departments across the United States of America and Canada.
John Butler is fire chief for the Fairfax County (VA) Fire and Rescue Department, a CFAI accredited agency, a position he has held since 2018. Prior to this he was with the Howard County (MD) Department of Fire and Rescue Services where he rose through the ranks to fire chief.
Chief Butler holds a graduate degree from Johns Hopkins University and a number of certificates from national organizations. He is co-chair of the IAFC Diversity Executive Leadership Program, is a member of the National Fire Academy Board of Visitors and sits on the Northern Virginia Fire and Rescue Leadership Development Institute Advisory Board.
Chief Butler holds designations in CFO-2019, CEMSO-2020, CTO-2020, FM-2020.
Terry Ford is the Chief of the Fire and Emergency Services Division at Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma, a CFAI accredited agency. His fire service career began in 1982 and has included assignments at U.S. Air Force bases around the globe as well as Superintendent of the DoD Fire Academy. He was named chief at Tinker Air Force Base in 2005.
Chief Ford holds a bachelor’s degree in Fire Science Management and a master’s degree in Human Resource Management.
Chief Ford is a graduate of the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Office Program and earned his designation as Chief Fire Officer in 2002.
Ken Holland is a senior emergency service specialist with the National Fire Protection Association. He has 23 years in EMS, of which 19 years he has devoted his time to being a paramedic. Before the NFPA, Mr. Holland was a member of the Bridgewater, Massachusetts Fire Department for 5 years as a fire fighter/paramedic and the ALS coordinator for the department.
Mr. Holland has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and master’s degree in Public Administration.
James Keating is fire chief of the Red, White and Blue Fire Protection District in Breckenridge, Colorado, a CFAI accredited agency. He has been an active member in the fire service since 1972 and served as chief of the Pottawatomie County Fire District #1 and city of St. Mary’s Kansas. His last five years at St. Mary’s he served in a dual role as the Fire Chief and City Manager.
Chief Keating joined the Red, White and Blue Fire Protection District in 2010 and became chief in 2012. His career accomplishments include two terms as president of the Kansas State Fire Chiefs Association and two terms as president of the Kansas Firefighters Association.
Chief Keating earned his designation as Chief Fire Officer in 2017.
Kevin Kuntz is a vice president and chief engineer with ISO leading the Risk Engineering, Engineering & Safety, and Technical Training groups. He serves as the lead technical resource and director of national policy on a variety of technical subjects. Prior to joining ISO, Mr. Kuntz spent seven years with Industrial Risk Insurers as a risk control engineer and over 20 years with Marsh in various leadership positions related to risk control including national practice leader for the oil and chemical consulting practice.
He has over 43 years of volunteer fire service experience and served as fire chief for the North Brunswick (NJ) Fire Department. He presently serves as an active firefighter with the Gettysburg (PA) fire department.
Mr. Kuntz received a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Tulane University.
Jesse Lightle is the Washington Township (OH) administrator, a position she has held since 2008 when she was promoted from deputy administrator. Prior to this she was the assistant city manager for the City of Clayton. Ms. Lightle is chair of the Master of Public Administration Advisory Board at Wright State University and a member of the International City/County Managers Association where she served on the Board of Directors from 2006-2013 and was president from 2011-2012.
Ms. Lightle holds a bachelor’s degree from Wright State University and a Master’s in Urban Administration, also from Wright State where she was an adjunct professor in the WSU Master of Public Administration Program.
Jake Rhoades is the fire chief for the Kingman, Arizona, Fire Department, a CFAI accredited agency.
Chief Rhoades holds a master’s degree in Executive Fire Service Leadership and is pursuing a doctorate in Business Management.
Chief Rhoades received his designation as Chief Fire Officer in 2010, Chief EMS Officer in 2012 and Chief Training Officer in 2012.