Life memberships for brigade's founding members

Member News image Bronwyn Pollard, Captain Serafina Munns, Daniel Nolan, William (Bill) McIntosh, Audrey Bermingham and Peter Langridge


The five founding members of District 13’s headquarters brigade have received Brigade Life Membership Medals in recognition of their efforts to establish the brigade.


Bronwyn Pollard, Daniel Nolan, William (Bill) McIntosh, Audrey Bermingham and Peter Langridge were presented with their medals by acting Commander Peter Nolan at the brigade’s annual dinner earlier this month.

This is the first time the brigade has awarded life memberships.

A host of other awards were presented on the night. Lex Wade and Lieutenant Robyn Stebbing were presented with 45-year service medals.

Russell Smith was awarded the 30-year medal while Kevin Turner and Peter Kueffer received their 25-year medal. Patrick O’Donnell was awarded his 20 Year Medal and both Audrey Bermingham and Michael Garrett received their 15-year medal.    

Daniel, a longstanding CFA volunteer and current member of Lilydale Fire Brigade, said it was a great honour to receive a life membership for his work with the headquarters brigade.

“District headquarters brigade members bring broad-ranging skills from across the organisation to support their local patch as well as the state,” he said.

“To have your peers recognise this service through life membership of the brigade is extremely humbling.”

Peter, a volunteer with Yellingbo and CFA’s Health Monitoring & Rehabilitation Coordinator, said receiving the award was very unexpected.

“I was very surprised and humbled to receive the honour,” Peter said.

Audrey agreed saying when they announced they were awarding the brigade life memberships during the dinner, she was “blown away”.

“It was such an honour to be recognised in this way by our brigade members and great recognition of the significant contribution of headquarters brigades,” she said.

The push to establish a headquarters brigade in District 13 came after the 2003 Eastern Victorian alpine bushfires. During the three-month firefight, volunteer members spent six weeks stationed in Omeo, providing health support and monitoring to members on the ground.

It was determined that a brigade with specialist health and welfare knowledge would provide much-needed ongoing support and guidance, particularly in an incident management capacity.  

Officially established in 2006, the brigade has gone on to provide incident management and health and welfare support to the district and state. Members bring a range of skills to the brigade including expertise in health research, aviation and incident management.


Submitted by Shaunnagh O'Loughlin