First Fire Department Captain Credentialed as a Fire Officer

fire officer
Donate Today

Fire Officer Credentials

The Naperville Fire Department announced Stephen Shink, a 20-year veteran of the fire department, has become the first captain and department’s only current line officer to be credentialed as a Fire Officer.

The designation comes from the Center for Public Safety Excellence and The Commission on Professional Credentialing. He received the designation after completing a months-long peer review process. It reflects his qualifications in education, experience, affiliations, technical competence, community involvement, training and skill development, and professional contributions.

Captain Stephen Shink

“Captain Shink is now one of only 550 Fire Officer designees worldwide and is yet another example of the commitment to excellence exhibited by another tier of the fire Department rank structure,” said Naperville Fire Chief Mark Puknaitis. “The Naperville Fire Department has encouraged not only its chief officers, but also members of line-level supervisory staff, to obtain this high level of professional credentialing. I don’t know of any other department in the nation that has as much credentialing in all of its ranks as our great department has accomplished.”

According to the press release, Shink said pursuing the Fire Officer designation helped him identify his strengths and weaknesses after years of working under positive mentors who have taught him the value of continuous improvement.

He has been involved with the fire department since 1992, starting out as a 14-year-old fire explorer. He has grown his career since, working as a firefighter and paramedic, lieutenant, and now captain. “The Fire Officer designation is an excellent way to hallmark the knowledge gained as you progress as an officer,” said Shink.

Puknaitis said he hopes Shink’s achievement will encourage other captains and lieutenants to pursue credentialing. The Fire Officer designation lasts for three years. Maintaining Fire Officer status requires recipients to show continued professional growth and community contributions while adhering to a strict code of professional conduct.

Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.

photo courtesy: City of Naperville