The Southeast Region
The Southeast Region is one of the original three (3) regions established in 1970 at the forming of the International Association of Black Professional Firefighters (IABPFF). Today, there are seven (7) Regions of the IABPFF. The Southeast Region (SER) is the geographical area of the United States that contains: Alabama, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. The SER has a rich history of being the front- runner in leadership and organization initiatives for the IABPFF.
International Association of Black Professional Firefighters
The International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters (IABPFF) is a fraternal organization within the fire service. The idea of forming an international organization of Black firefighters was first advanced by Vincent Julius and John Ruffins, both members of the Vulcan Society of New York City, Inc., in 1960. It took nine years before a national effort could be mounted, which occurred after the 1968 civil disturbances.
To address the lack of substantial access into the Fire Service, upward mobility opportunities, ineffective efforts in the reduction of fire deaths and property loss, and conversation in the communities of greatest need, it therefore became incumbent upon Black professional firefighters to press for wide-scale nationwide reform.
In September of 1969, Black and minority firefighters of all ranks from municipalities across the United States met in New York City for two days of discussion on the injustices that exist in the following categories:
- The recruitment and retention of Black youths into the fabric of the fire service
- Fire department’s community relations, practices, and fire prevention programs
Out of this very productive meeting the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters was born.
In October of 1970, the first convention of the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters was held in Hartford, Connecticut. The constitution and the proposed structure of the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters were adopted. The International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters was formally organized on October 3, 1970.The five founding organizations were the Phoenix Society of Hartford, CT, Valiants, Inc. of Philadelphia, PA, Vulcan Pioneers of Hudson County, Jersey City, NJ, Vulcan Pioneers of New Jersey, Newark, NJ, and Vulcan Society, Inc., New York City, NY. Individual firefighters from New Haven and a lone firefighter from Springfield, MA joined in with the Phoenix Society, Hartford. On February 28, 1970, it was recommended that an interim governing body be set up and function until the Convention.
The elected officers for the interim governing body were Chairman John B. Stewart, Phoenix Society, Hartford, Co-Chairman David Floyd, Vulcan Society, Inc., New York, Secretary Donald Brown, Valiants, Inc., Philadelphia, Treasurer Nelson Carter Phoenix Society, Hartford, and Corresponding Secretary Howard Rhone, Valiants, Inc., Philadelphia.
Our first president, David J. Floyd, a member of the Vulcan Society of New York City, Inc., served in office for ten consecutive years. President Floyd was the principal architect of the organization’s preamble, goals and objectives.
The Southeast Region is the grouping of Local Chapters and Individual Members within the District of Columbia and cities of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.
Mission Statement of the International Association of Black Professional Firefighters is to create a liaison between our Brothers and Sisters of color globally. To collect and evaluate data on all deleterious conditions impacting all areas where injustices exist in the fire service, in our communities, and implement action to correct them.
Whereas we, The International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters, are aware of the increasing complexity of our problems and those of our Brothers and Sisters within the community, feel called upon to form an organization for the purpose of studying and solving such problems; in order to take our place in the vanguard of civilization, we hereby form ourselves into an organization for the purpose of cultivating and maintaining professional competence among fire fighters, and establishment of unity and brotherhood, also keeping alive the interest among retired members for the avowed purpose of improving the social status of our Race, and increasing professional efficiency.
What We Do
The Southeast Region has a very rich history of being the front-runner in:
- Organizational Initiatives
- Community Outreach
Directors of the Southeast Region
Brenda Brooks (Orlando, FL) – 2015 – PresentLindsey Plummer (Miami, FL) – 2003 – 2015Leroy Norwood (Chattanooga, TN) – 1991 – 2003Theodore O. Holmes (Washington, DC) – 1983 – 1991Alphonso Thornton (Baltimore, MD) – 1977 – 1983Freddie L. Brown (Washington, DC) – 1975 – 1977Calvin Brown (Baltimore, MD) – 1972 – 1975Samuel S. Wilson (Baltimore, MD) – 1970 – 1972
Why choose us?
- Access to professional fire service networking
- Fraternal associations worldwide
- Discounts on services and products
- Leadership, professional development, and organizational structure training
- Discounted education tuition for members and their family from accredited institutions
- Discounted hotel rates (conferences and conventions)
- Business networking
- Access to the IABPFF Drum collaboration system
- Access to online/virtual meeting systems
- Cultural education, fellowship, collaboration, and edification
- Notary services
- IABPFF membership card and auto decal
- Free email service
- Access to lobby at the national level with professional organization association
- Access to implement the “Do Right” protocol (The power to bring the wrath of 3000+ Fire Service professionals down on a city manager, city council and/or fire department Chief and command staff)
- Lifetime Members
- Discount on convention registrations
- Access to the Retirees section on the Drum
- Gold Medal honor and recognition to the entire membership via the Drum
- IABPFF Lifetime membership card
- Role models
- Professionals to serve programs and support events and campaigns
- Career guidance and advice
- Positive contributors to society
- Professional organization networking
- National fire service safety campaigns
The Fire Service
- Fire service professionals to help make the fire service a better place to work
- Another perspective to consider regarding fire service issues
- National fire service safety campaign
- Diverse fire service professional federal grant reviewers
- Diverse fIre service professional consultants and proctors for promotion boards and assessment centers
- Professionals to serve programs and support events and campaigns
The buttons to the right provide the ability to join as a Chapter, or as an Individual!To join as a Chapter To join as an Individual Member