Today@Sam Article

LEMIT Launches Fire Marshals Program

Feb. 8, 2017
SHSU Media Contact: Beth Kuhles

Fire Marshals at workThe Bill Blackwood Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas at Sam Houston State University is partnering with the Texas Fire Marshals’ Association to provide the first executive development program in the nation.

The Fire Executive Management Training Program for Fire Marshals will address nationally recognized standards, as well as the knowledge, skills and abilities needed to perform essential tasks of the job.

The five-day program will focus on leadership and management for day-to-day operations of the fire marshals service, a unique entity that combines the skills of fire service with those of law enforcement.

Among the activities that will be undertaken are:

  • Review laws, codes, standards, and regulatory agencies governing fire marshals
  • Manage budgets, records, information and human resources for individual agencies
  • Develop strategic planning
  • Evaluate community risk management
  • Improve community relations strategies for fire and life safety
  • Participate in professional development
  • Learn advanced fire prevention, inspection, code enforcement, and education techniques

“We are thrilled for this opportunity to partner with Sam Houston State University and LEMIT in the development and delivery of this course for fire marshals,” said Laurie L. Christensen, TFMA president. “It addresses a need for executive management training for fire marshals across Texas and the nation, and we are excited to have a part in the first program in the United States to do that.”

To qualify, participants must be a fire marshal or in a leadership role; hold a certificate as a fire inspector, a fire investigator or in public education; and have completed the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Course 3737 or Texas Commission on Fire Protection programs Fire Officer I and II, or hold a bachelor’s degree in business, public administration or related field. Admission to the program will be on a competitive basis through an application process. Sponsorships currently are being accepted to keep cost to a minimum.

“With its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional management and leadership development, LEMIT is pleased to extend this tremendous opportunity to fire service personnel,” said LEMIT executive director Rita J. Watkins. “This training will provide participants with the necessary tools to inspire excellence in leadership and enhance the effective delivery of services to the communities they serve.”

For the last 30 years, LEMIT has led the nation in providing education, professional development, research, and service to law enforcement agencies around the state to inspire leadership and management skills for 21st century policing.

Created by the Texas Legislature in 1989, LEMIT is one of the largest and most sophisticated statewide preparation programs for police management and is nationally recognized for its initiatives to develop the administrative, analytical and executive skills of current and future law enforcement officials.

LEMIT also is branching out to provide high-caliber professional development opportunities to other public safety agencies that serve the community. In January, it launched an initiative for dispatchers and telecommunications staff to help reduce stress and better learn how to deal with difficult people.

For more information about the new initiatives, contact program coordinator Andrea Hoke at 936.294.3702 or at

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