• SER Director


Single mother of two (one deceased) and grandmother of six. Worked for Orange County Fire for 36 years, and now retired.  Has a love for animals and enjoys the weather in Florida.

Director Brooks has been a member of the IABPFF for 34 years working in several positions on  the Local, Regional and International boards. Attended conventions 1985 – to present, only missing one in 23 years, and have only missed four Southeast regional meetings. 1985-1987: Member of the PFACF, wrote and received $95000.00 grant for smoke detector program.

Director Brooks prepared herself for leadership positions in the organization by promoting within Orange County Fire, and with the acceptance of mentorship from Leroy Norwood, Theodore Holmes, and Romeo Spaulding. This has led to her leadership of the Southeast Region Directors position.

 Organizational Positions!

Progressive Firefighters Association of Central Florida

  • President
  • Vice-President

Black Women In Fire Service:

  • Director
  • Financial Secretary

Southeast Region:

  • Southeast Region Director
  • First Vice Director
  • Second Vice-Director
  • News Letter Editor
  • Meeting Planner

International Association of Black Professional Firefighters:

  • Financial Secretary
  • Meeting Planner


1ST Vice Director

Rita M. Francis, born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, received her education in the Baltimore City public schools system. She attended James Madison University, and earned certificates as an Emergency Medical and Cardiac Rescue Technician from the Community College of Baltimore. Ms. Francis started her career in the emergency services arena with the Rockingham County Volunteer Fire Department, in Harrisonburg, Virginia. She secured employment as an Emergency Medical Technician and Dispatcher for a private ambulance service and in 1986 joined the Woodlawn Volunteer Fire Department, Baltimore County, Maryland.

In 1989, Ms. Francis became a dispatcher with the Howard County Bureau of Communications in Ellicott City, Maryland, where she dispatched fire, rescue, EMS, and police personnel. She is trained in hostage negotiation, domestic violence intervention, and is a national and Maryland State certified Emergency Medical Dispatcher. She was also  a twenty-five year member of the Howard County Critical Incident Stress Management Team.

Ms. Francis has been a member of the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters (IABPFF) since 1992. On the Executive Board of her local chapter, The Phoenix Sentinels of Howard County, Maryland, she has served as 2nd Vice-President and Secretary. She has also served as the Corresponding Secretary of Black Women in the Fire Service, an affiliate of the IABPFF. Ms. Francis has served as the Corresponding Secretary for the IABPFF from 2008 to 2018. She was the Corresponding Secretary for the South East Region of the IABPFF from 2001 to 2015, and is currently the First Vice-Director for the South East Region of the IABPFF.  In 2006 Ms. Francis was presented with an Outstanding Service Award, and in 2012 she was awarded a MOMS pin from the IABPFF.

Ms. Francis is the proud mother of a son, Darius Staten, and resides with her significant other, Frederick Cotton in Memphis, TN.


2ND Assistant Director

An experienced Fire Service Leader whose professional responsibility expands into areas of public education, public speaking, motivational leadership and decision-making.  Competent and knowledgeable in all phases of Fire Service Management as it relates to Fire Suppression, with specific expertise in Fire Prevention & Safety. 

Professionally trained by Dr. Carl Homes, creator of the Executive Development Institute, the National Fire Academy, the University of Memphis and Chattanooga State Technical Community College to conduct Research and Planning that forecast long-range department goals.  As an instructor, I have contributed pertinent information to the Executive Development Institute overall organizational plan, which has impacted thousands of individuals and their corresponding fire departments, as well as, their Fire Safety Management Division goals. 

Provide guidance on Developing Fire & Life Safety Strategies to Fire Chiefs, Fire Marshal, City Officials, Fire Protection Engineers, Fire Plans Examiners, Public Education Officers, Fire Inspectors, and Fire Service personnel, Architects, Code Enforcement Officers and business owners.


City of Chattanooga Fire Department – July 3, 1987 – Present

 An experienced Fire Service Leader whose professional responsibility expands into areas of public education, public speaking, motivational leadership and decision-making.


  Joined the Brothers United, Chattanooga, TN. In 1987

·Served as President for (4) years        


Chattanooga State Community College

Fire Science Technology  A.A.S.

University of Memphis

– Bachelors of Professional Studies

Fire Administration/Fire Prevention Technology B.P.S.

National Fire Academy

 – Fire Prevention & Life Safety Education


  • National Fire Protection Association
  • National Fire Academy Alumna Association
  • National Fire and Life Safety Educator
  • Home Safety Council


  • Board of Directors for Generation (H.O.P.E.) Male Mentoring Program Inc.
  • Make-A-Wish Foundation of East Tennessee (Wish Granter)
  • 2nd Vice-Director Southeast Region 
  • Founding member of The 100 Black Men of Chattanooga
  • Community Relation Coordination (I.A.B.P.F.F.)

General Colin Powell’s America’s Promise

East 5th Street Child Care Center Board of Directors

Event Coordinator for Blood Assurance (Bone Marrow Drive)

Director for Black Achievers Henry Branch Y.M.C.A.

Center for Missing and Exploited Children (Take 25) 

  • Mentoring at Howard School for Males


  • Developed a National community outreach program to address fire and life safety across the country
  • Listed as a faculty of the U.S. Fire Administration’s National Fire Academy



Chattanooga native, David Brooks is a captain for the Chattanooga Fire Department.  Captain Brooks has been with the Chattanooga Fire Department for 24 years, rising through the ranks while holding a number of vital positions at the department, including the Fire Marshal and a Fire Safety Educator.


Captain Brooks is currently assigned to the fire suppression division. He serves as an executive board member in several organizations and committees. Captain Brooks is an executive board member of the local chapter of the I.A.B.P.F.F. (International Association of Black Professional Firefighters), and serves as the treasurer of the Southeast Region of the I.A.B.P.F.F.  He is also a board member of the MLK Weed and Seed, the Community Anti-Drug Coalition of America, and the Department of Justice Enforcing Underage Drinking Laws Program.  Captain Brooks is a co-founder of the Mentors of the Community.  He volunteers much of his time mentoring at several inner city schools and provides career building and life training skills to troubled teenagers.  Captain Brooks spends many evenings lecturing to area neighborhood associations and promoting fire safety and awareness.  He has earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from the University of Tennessee. In addition to his degree in business from the University of Tennessee, he is a graduate from Clark Atlanta University, where he completed the 5 year Carl Holmes Executive Development Institute program.

Captain Brooks has played an intricate role in and has served as a facilitator for the City of Chattanooga Public Safety Education programs.  He enjoys mentoring and assisting the elderly and underprivileged in his community.  He received the United Way 2007 Volunteer of the Year Award for his invaluable involvement with the local United Way.  He also received the 2004 and 2008 Firefighter of the Year Award for his extensive community involvement.  Captain Brooks served as a trustee for almost a decade on the Chattanooga Fire and Police Pension Board, upholding fiduciary duties and responsibilities, including managing and protecting participant’s benefits.

As the current treasurer for the IABPFF S.E.R., I am asking for your vote and continued support. I will continue my duties managing and overseeing the financial affairs of this region. Thank you in advance.



Recording Secretary



Single mother of five. Has been working for Miami Dade Fire  Rescue for 24 ½ years.  Has a love for instructing and swimming.

Keisha Wilson has been a member of the IABPFF for 24 ½ years working in several positions on  the Local, Regional and International boards. In addition to her employment with Miami Dade Fire Rescue, she holds certifications as:

  • Instructor
  • Driver’s Training Instructor
  • Recruiter
  • CPAT Proctor (IAFF Candidate Physical Abilities Test)
  • Engineer Operator for:
    • Pumper
    • Squirt (Combination Pumper and Aerial Apparatus)
    • Aerial
    • QRV (Quick Reaction Vehicle That is an All Terrain Pumper)
    • Swimming Instructor
    • Scuba Diver (Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) Certified)
    • Lifeguard
    • Hazardous Materials Certified
    • Air Truck Certified

Keisha Wilson has also volunteered with Local 1403 with their “Toys For Kids” Drive for over 20 years.

Organizational Positions!

Progressive Firefighters Association Charities Inc.

  • Recording Secretary
  • Executive Board Member
  • 40TH Anniversary Committee
  • Recruiting Committee

Black Women In Fire Service:

  • Member

Southeast Region:

  • Recording Secretary (2 Consecutive Terms)

International Association of Black Professional Firefighters:

  • Recording Secretary


Corresponding Secretary

Sabrina M. Potter, considers her most outstanding achievement to be that she is the mother of 4, ages 43, 40, 37, 33, adoptive mother of 4 ages 38, 37, 34, 34, and Nana of 15. Mrs. Potter retired from Ormond Beach Fire Department November 22, 2006 due to Ventricular Ectopy and the complications thereof. Sabrina, appealed an order from the Judge of Compensation Claims, denying her claim for impairment benefits for her work related Ventricular Ectopy, her appealed case was won.

This Case set a precedence for all Firefighters. To read more go to: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/data2/floridastatecases/app/app1_10_2005/04-4636.pdf

Sabrina, is a many faceted entrepreneur, who strongly supports studies in Equal Employment Opportunity and Diversity in the Fire Service. She is the First and currently the last, Black Female to hold the rank of Firefighter/Paramedic for the City of Ormond Beach, Florida Fire Department. Sabrina, obtained her Degree in Emergency Medical Services in 1998, and went on to become a State of Florida Fire Inspector and State of Florida Certified Pump Operator. 

Sabrina began her career as a Part-Time temporary Firefighter/EMT for the City of Jacksonville’s Port Authority at Craig Airfield. Sabrina served as a volunteered Firefighter with the City of Jacksonville Fire Rescue Department while continuing her training and raising her family. In 2005 Sabrina, became a representative for Essence of Fire, Inc. the first and currently the only Female Firefighter Calendar that features Women of Color in the Fire Service. In 2006 Mrs. Potter became the Vice President of Essence of Fire, Inc. which afforded the opportunity to combine her endeavors of bring Fire Service Females together while aiding in providing resources to at Risk Children in inner cities. Sabrina is a lifetime active member of the IABPFF who volunteers her talents in organizational service, recruitment of new members and Chapter Start-ups for the IABPFF and BWFS. Sabrina has been with the Organization since 1994

Organizational Positions!

Black Women In Fire Service:

  • President
  • Vice President
  • Recording Secretary
  • Corresponding Secretary

Southeast Region:

  • Corresponding Secretary
  • SER Election Chair
  • Registration Chair

International Association of Black Professional Firefighters:

  • Election Chair



Interim Sergeant-At-Arms

Born and raised in Washington DC.  Still a current resident, Robert Pearson began his career in the Fire Service December 17TH, 1990 with the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department.  Robert is a dedicated Fire and EMS manager with strong qualifications in budgeting, personnel affairs, training, resource management, information technology, public safety, and emergency response.  He has well-developed leadership and analytical skills.  Robert has a reputation for strong work ethic and an uncompromising devotion to service.

Robert honed his skill as a manger by completing the Executive Development Institute and the plethora of training he received at the University of Maryland – Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute, the University of the District of Columbia, Howard University, the National Fire Academy – Emmitsburg, Maryland, Pennsylvania Boat and Fishing Commission, and his service in the United States Marine Corps.  He is also a NIMS Instructor for FEMA.  His unwavering dedication to perfecting his technical skills and proficiencies has propelled him in many facets of the fire service.

Robert began his membership with the International Association of Black Professional Firefighters (IABPFF) in 1996.  He obtained a position on the Executive Board of the Progressive Firefighters Association of Washington DC as the Financial Secretary in 2002.  Presently, holding the position of 2ND Vice President.  Robert was appointed the IT Char of the Southeast Region in 2016.  He also hold the position of Assistant IT Chair for the IABPFF.