SES Volunteers Association of Western Australia (Incorporated)

One Association - Many Values

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14/06/2010 – Queens Birthday Honours 2010

The following honours have been announced to the following Western Australian SES and VMRS personnel today.

EMERGENCY SERVICES MEDAL (ESM)

Mr Alfred George BAIRSTOW, Albany WA 6330

Mr Bairstow has served the emergency services and the community of Western Australia with distinction for over 35 years. He was a driving force in the establishment of the Albany Sea Rescue Squad (ASRS) in 1975 and, since then, he and his son have performed maritime search and rescue operations off the coast of south west Australia. In the early years the Albany State Emergency Service (SES) and the ASRS were combined and Mr Bairstow and his son split their time between SES and marine duties and incidents. Nevertheless, they averaged approximately 15 rescues a year, with most rescues being carried out using two steel workboats Kundalee and Kallaroo. These boats were often taken on the 17 nautical miles’ trip to the notorious ’The Gap’ area in the Great Southern Ocean to perform rescues, searches or retrieve bodies, often in treacherous conditions. Mr Bairstow remains a dedicated member of the team; he is a consummate professional highly skilled at his craft. He has evolved through the ASRS as a skipper, trainer and mentor, and is a major asset to Volunteer Marine Rescue as a whole.

Mr Colin James BAIRSTOW

Mr Bairstow has served the emergency services and the community of Western Australia with distinction for over 35 years. He began his involvement with the Albany Sea Rescue Squad (ASRS) when only 14 years of age when his father played a leading role in establishing the Squad. Since then, he and his father have performed maritime search and rescue operations off the coast of south west Australia. In the early years the Albany State Emergency Service (SES) and the ASRS were combined and Mr Bairstow and his father split their time between SES and marine duties and incidents. Nevertheless, they averaged approximately 15 rescues a year, with most rescues being carried out using two steel workboats Kundalee and Kallaroo These boats were often taken on the 17 nautical miles’ trip to the notorious ’The Gap’ area in the Great Southern Ocean to perform rescues, searches or retrieve bodies, often in treacherous conditions. In his current position as Engineer and Senior Skipper, Mr Bairstow is a consummate professional highly skilled at his craft. He has developed into an outstanding skipper, trainer and mentor, and is a major asset to Volunteer Marine Rescue as a whole.

Mr Gary John GIFFORD

Mr Gifford has been an influential member of the emergency services in Western Australia for over 10 years with the Fire and Emergency Services Authority (FESA). A former police officer, he was initially appointed in the FESA as a regional Director in the Pilbara Kimberley for the WA State Emergency Service (SES). He had many successes in the role particularly in modernising and improving the response capability in vulnerable communities. He worked extremely hard to improve relationships amongst all services, and oversaw and led many emergency responses. More recently he has been employed in a senior operational role as an Assistant Chief Operations Officer, being responsible for natural hazard planning for operations, and has been instrumental In improving the FESA’s preparedness and response capabilities. Mr Gifford has provided outstanding leadership in the development of Operational Doctrine related to the SES functions of the FESA ensuring that the one-service all-hazard philosophy has been adopted. He has also been influential in developing the support of key SES volunteers in this regard and has used opportunities such as leadership forums and SES conferences to develop this strategy. Mr Gifford has served the FESA and the community of Western Australia with distinction

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