More than 1,000 fire fighters and their families will convene in Hartford, Conn. starting today/Monday, August 22 through Friday, August 26 for the Golden Anniversary Convention of The International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters, Inc. (IABPFF). The Marriott Hartford Downtown is the host hotel for convention that will feature a wide range of workshops, business meetings, social events, and impactful activities.
“Our 2022 convention’s theme is Honoring Our Past, Respecting Our Present and Shaping Our Future,” explains Gary Tinney, a retired New Haven, Conn. Fire Captain who is Vice President of The International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters, Inc. “The first IABPFF convention was held in Hartford in 1970, but it’s been 52 years since we’ve met here since we take our event to a different city every year. We look forward to seeing our professional brothers and sisters from across the U.S., as well as London, the Caribbean, and beyond this week.”
The Opening Ceremony will take place today/Monday, August 22 at 9 a.m. at the Marriott Hartford Downtown. Major events during the week include a powerful Memorial March of 300 fire fighters on Wednesday, August 24 at 8:30 a.m. from the Marriott to Faith Congregation Church on Main St., followed by a Memorial Service. On Friday, August 26 at 12:30 p.m., IABPFF will host a Community Service Event at the Wilson-Gray YMCA in Hartford to distribute bags of school supplies to students. That evening at 8 p.m. at the Marriott, a Golden Anniversary Celebration will feature welcoming remarks by Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont, Congressman John Larson, and New York Attorney General Letitia James, among others.
Throughout the convention, workshops will focus on fire fighting training, tactical demonstrations, and the complexities of mental health challenges, and other pertinent topics. During the week, speakers will include: Carrie Edwards-Clemons, Deputy Fire Chief of Flint, Mich. who is the first female President of the IABPFF; Convention Event Chair Brenda Brooks of the Orange County, Fla.’s Sheriff’s Office; and Scot X Esdaile, President of the Connecticut NAACP.
“We are pleased to welcome this prestigious association to our Capital City,” says Robert Murdock, President of the Connecticut Convention & Sports Bureau (CTmeetings), the state’s official meetings and sports events sales and marketing organization. “This convention has been a long time coming, ever since our Bureau began working with the IABPFF over four years ago. Initially scheduled to come to Hartford in August 2020, it was postponed due to COVID. Congratulations to the IABPFF leadership and members for organizing a full, exciting and meaningful schedule of activities.”