Talon News - Good Local News



September 29, 2017

Dorothy Nobis

Local firefighters watch a demonstration during the conference in Bloomfield

More than 100 firefighters and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) from Carlsbad, Los Lunas, Gallup, Cuba and the Four Corners area attended the San Juan River Fire/EMS Conference held in Bloomfield September 21-24.

While training required for continuing education was important, attendees enjoyed guest speakers and networking, said Bloomfield Fire Chief John Mohler.

"We're very pleased with the attendance," Mohler said. "People liked the training, the speakers, the vendors, and they all liked our little town."

The conference was put together in just a few months, after the conference, originally scheduled for Albuquerque, was canceled in July, Mohler explained.

"We put together a committee of Laura Hensley, Division Chief of EMS for San Juan County, and Greg Brown, Jordan Richards, Tony Herrera and me, all of the Bloomfield Fire Department," Mohler said.

With the success of this first conference, Mohler said the committee plans to host another one, likely next September, although the dates haven't yet been confirmed.

"But we'll start a little earlier," Mohler said with a grin, "and we'll plan additional activities for those who attend."

The committee will begin its marketing campaign earlier as well, and will seek additional sponsors.

Dr. Coffee Brown, who spent 10 years as an educator, 20 years as an emergency medical physician, and seven years as a medical educator, was a guest speaker and drew a good crowd, Mohler said.

In addition to attendees receiving the training and the vendors, Mohler said they stayed in Bloomfield hotels and enjoyed eating in the city's restaurants.

"It was good for our economy this year," Mohler said, adding the committee hopes to double the attendance – and the dollars attendees bring – to the Bloomfield economy as well.

Bloomfield Mayor Scott Eckstein welcomed conference attendees at breakfast. "It was great seeing all the first responders gathered together for training and education," Eckstein said. "The Bloomfield Fire Department has always been a leader in New Mexico for its training and professionalism, and I'm proud of our department for putting on such a great conference in such little time. We look forward to seeing these firefighters and EMTs – and lots more – next year."


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