“Blazing the Way for georgia Fire Safety Dealers”

For Immediate Release
March 30, 2016

Dwayne Garriss Recognized for Dedication to Promote Fire Safety

CLEVELAND, Ohio (October 10, 2016) – Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association has selected M. Dwayne Garriss, Georgia State Fire Marshal, for its 2016 Fire Safety Advocate Award.

The annual award is given to a fire safety professional who has demonstrated a commitment to enhancing the safety of the public through innovative efforts, including legislative, educational, enforcement or other effective means.

“Dwayne Garriss has dedicated much of his career to fire safety, particularly to educating and training fire inspectors, fire marshals and other code officials,” said Bill Vegso, president of Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association. “Dwayne’s lasting commitment and ongoing efforts to promote fire safety through engineering, education and enforcement make him eminently qualified to receive this prestigious award.”

The incoming president of the International Code Council (ICC), Garriss has served as the chairman of the Georgia Fire Safety Symposium for 21 years, providing leadership and guidance to the delivery of thousands of hours of training and education to fire safety professionals. In addition, he works as a professor at numerous colleges and universities, and serves as an instructor at the Georgia Fire Academy and several other educational endeavors.
Georgia State Fire Marshall

During his nearly 28-year firefighting career and five-and-a-half years as Georgia State Fire Marshal, Garriss has also been a member of Georgia’s Joint Fire Service Legislative Committee, the National Association of State Fire Marshals’ Model Codes Committee, ICC’s Joint Fire Service Review Committee and ICC’s Board of Directors, and served two years as president of the Georgia Fire Inspectors’ Association.

“Few have dedicated themselves to this extent of furthering the fire prevention profession as Dwayne Garriss,” added Vegso. “His contributions to the industry make him the ideal recipient of the Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association’s 2016 Fire Safety Advocate Award.”

Dwayne Garriss will be formally presented with the Fire Safety Advocate Award during the Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association’s Annual Meeting on October 12-14, 2016 in Charleston, South Carolina.

A headshot of Dwayne Garriss is available upon request.

About the Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association
The Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association is a more than 60-year-old non-profit trade association dedicated to saving lives and protecting property by providing education of a balanced fire protection design. For additional information, including videos, interactive questionnaires and training websites about fire safety and protection, visit or call 216-241-7333. For a complete listing of member companies, visit the Member Profiles page of the association’s website at

For More Information, Contact:
Coalesce, Inc. | 920-380-4444

Winners of the 3rd Annual GAFSED / Randy Carlisle Memorial Scholarship

The third annual GAFSED / Randy Carlisle Memorial Scholarship first place prize was awarded Friday night, March 18th, 2016 to Miss Madison Brooks of Monroe Georgia. Madison is the daughter of Brandon and Shelly Brooks of Pro-Tec Fire and Safety in Loganville. Madison is a junior at Georgia College & State University focusing on a degree in pediatric nursing. Her goal is to one day be working at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta in Pediatrics or the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
     Madison had an outstanding essay as well as a stellar letter of reference from one of her high school business education teachers. She also provided the scholarship committee with a long list of Community Service activities that she has been or currently is involved in. For these reasons along with many others the GAFSED / Randy Carlisle Memorial Scholarship Committee along with the GAFSED Board of Directors was proud to donate a check in the amount of $1,500.00 to Madison Brooks to further Madison in her college career. The other two finalists; Justin Franklin of Elberton Georgia and Erika Bowen of Buford Georgia each received a $250.00 scholarship to further their college careers. Justin is associated with Swift Fire Protection of Elberton, and Erika with Exit Pro in Buford.
     These scholarships will be awarded each year to deserving high school seniors or college students who have ties to GAFSED and to our industry here in Georgia. For more details and deadlines for applications check out the scholarship link.
Thanks so much, Arnold Harner (Scholarship Committee).

The 2016-2017 International Code Council Board of Directors Officers

International Code Council Voting Members elected Board Officers and Directors during the association's Annual Business Meeting at the 2016 Annual Conference in Kansas City, Mo. Voting Members also elected representatives to sectional and at-large positions on the board. 

Georgia State Fire Marshal M. Dwayne Garriss was elected President of the ICC Board. As the Chief of the Safety Fire Commissioner's Office, Garriss coordinates activates of the various industries regulated by the Safety Fire Commissioner throughout the state of Georgia. With an educational background in architecture and after beginning his career as a Mechanical Engineer Project Manager, Garriss relocated to the Office of the Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner in 1988 as a Fire Safety Engineer. Since 1993, until he was appointed as the Georgia State Fire Marshal in 2011, Garriss served in the position of Assistant State Fire Marshal overseeing the Engineering and Inspection Division and the licensing of fire suppression contractors, inspectors and special hazard system technicians. 

Garriss has adopted the theme for his presidential term, "Many Voices for One Purpose," which is intended to further unite the various stakeholder groups within the Code Council, and to continue initiatives, including fostering and mentoring the next generation of code and fire service officials. 

Garriss is a past chair of the ICC Fire Service Membership Council Governance Committee and has served on two exam development committees, the Codes Correlating Committee, and the Joint Fire Service Review Committee.
2016-2017 International Code Council Board of Directors Officers
The 2016-2017 International Code Council Board of Directors Officers, elected by the ICC Members during the 2016 Annual Business Meeting, are President M. Dwayne Garriss (second from right), Georgia State Fire Marshal; Vice President Jay Elbettar (second from left), P.E., CBO, Building Official, city of Mission Viejo, Calif.; Secretary/Treasurer William R. Bryant (left), MCP, CBO, Assistant Director of Inspections and Permits Department of Anne Arundel County, Md.; and Immediate Past President Alex Olszowy III (right), Building Inspector Manager, Lexington Fayette Urban County Government, Ky.

Scott Walter Lewis of Ocala
We are deeply saddened to announce the unexpected passing of Scott Walter Lewis. Scott was a friend to so many in our association as well as a board member and trusted business advisor to the Georgia Association of Fire Safety Equipment Dealers (GAFSED) for nearly four years. Scott passed away on Monday, September 19, 2016.
Scott was the General Manager of L & J Fire Equipment, LLC. He enjoyed fishing, being on the water, was an avid Gator fan, and he never missed a workout.
His passionate work increased the standards for the fire and life safety industry in Georgia, Florida and beyond. Scott will be greatly missed by his friends, family and GAFSED alike.

 A BIG “Thank You”

Many thanks to those of you from Hendrix Fire, Century Fire, Swift Fire, Cliff’s Fire, Security Fire, United Fire, H & R Fire and Fire Systems who along with our State Fire Marshall Dwayne Garriss made our first GAFSED / GPSTC Work Day on Friday and Saturday May 13th & 14th such a great success. The George M. Lanier Fire Protection Training Lab is on its way to being completed. With the help of these men (and one little lady), we installed almost 40 lineal feet of dry erase board 8 feet tall, a 10’ X 6’ restaurant hood, painted another 40’ of wooden wall, installed Pyro-Chem, Ansul and Range Guard systems on a mobile wall and have what will be a fully equipped portable fire extinguisher service trailer almost ready for inspection. A big “Thank You” goes out to Chris Hendrix of Hendrix Fire and David Walker of Century Fire for all the design, planning and coordination of our work day. If you didn’t get a chance to help this time we will probably have at least one more work day, possibly in September. We hopefully will have a FM-200 Clean Agent fire suppression system to install along with other work that still needs to be completed. We are leading the way ladies and gentlemen. Now that things are moving in a positive direction maybe the state Sprinkler association along with the state Alarm association will follow suit and before you know it this lab will be ready for use to better educate those in the Fire Safety Industry. This is but one positive step to provide better fire safety for all the citizens of Georgia.

 Thank you again,

Golfing for Good – GAFSED raises $3,200 for the Georgia Firefighters Burn Foundation

On March 17, 2016 the Georgia Association of Fire Safety Equipment Dealers (GAFSED) held its annual Golf Tournament to raise money for the Georgia Firefighters Burn Foundation (GFBF). The event was a success with $3,200 raised by over 30 golfers and sponsors from the Fire and Life Safety industry. 
The perfect springtime weather painted a lovely backdrop for friendly competition among industry associates for a good cause. State Fire Marshal, Dwayne Garriss, was on the winning team, alongside Carl Horst, Cliff Bennett and Josh Bennett. The closest to the pin winners were Scott Lewis and Paul Erickson. Congratulations gentlemen! 

GFBF’s mission is to partner with the fire service and burn care community to provide fire safety and prevention education, support medical facilities and assist with burn survivors in their recovery. Though they have a very small staff, they serve burn survivors throughout the state of Georgia. “We are so grateful for the partnership and support provided by GAFSED and its members. Every year, we are impressed by GAFSED’s continued dedication to fire prevention and education as well as supporting nonprofit organizations like the Georgia Firefighters Burn Foundation. We couldn’t support our mission without GAFSED,” stated GFBF Children Services Director, McKenzy Williams. 

The Georgia Association of Fire Safety Equipment Dealers is proud to sponsor GFBF and help fund the Summer and Winter Camps that the non-profit holds for children burn survivors. By attending these camp sessions, children are able to meet and build relationships with other young burn survivors that have similar struggles. The sense of community and the network of support these children receive from GFBF helps them develop and grow into stronger, more confident adults. If you are interested in volunteering or donating to the Georgia Firefighters Burn Foundation, visit ‘’ and click on the tabs ‘get involved’ and ‘donate.’
GAFSED Annual golf tournament to raise money for the Georgia firefighters burn foundation

In January, the Georgia Association of Fire Safety Dealers (GAFSED), the Georgia Fire Sprinkler Association (GFSA), the Fire Equipment Manufacturers Association (FEMA), and several Fire Academy Staff Members met at the new George M. Lanier Fire Lab to discuss the future of this great project. 

George M. Lanier Fire Protection Laboratory

George M. Lanier Fire Protection Laboratory
Since 2010, the Georgia Association of Fire Safety Equipment Dealers (GAFSED), the Georgia State Fire Marshal’s Office, Georgia Fire Academy, and the Georgia Fire Sprinkler Association (GFSA) have been collaborating in order to address the significant educational needs in the area of fire protection in Georgia. Just last year, the 2,400 square foot George M. Lanier Fire Protection Laboratory opened its doors due in part to this collaboration. Funded through a state bond package, this training facility will include assets such as fully functional portable fire extinguishers /recharging equipment, fire sprinkler systems, fire alarm systems, special hazard fire protection systems, HVAC systems and more. 

This state-of-the-art facility will allow Firefighters and other Georgia Fire Service Students to receive valuable, hands-on training which they can apply to the field. The knowledge and skills acquired at the Laboratory can and will make the difference between life and death in an emergency situation. GAFSED is honored to be a part of such a significant and impactful project which will benefit Firefighters and industry professionals for many years to come. 


CLEVELAND, Ohio (August 10, 2015) – The Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association has released a new video to train building owners on the proper use of fire extinguishers. The video, titled A Building Owners’ Guide to Using Portable Fire Extinguishers, supports the association’s mission to save lives and protect property through fire safety education.

“Fire extinguishers are only effective if people are prepared, confident and know how to use them,” said William Vegso, president of Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association. “The Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association produced this short video as a quick and easy way to ensure building owners receive accurate instructions for using fire extinguishers and make sure building owners and occupants remain safe in the event of a fire emergency.”

2.27.15 Brooks Equipment Mourns the Loss of Tim Foughty

We are deeply saddened to announce the unexpected passing of Tim Foughty, president of Brooks Equipment, on Monday, May 25, 2015.

Tim was passionate about Brooks Equipment’s work in the fire-safety industry. He genuinely believed in and advocated for the mission of the company: working together to keep our businesses and communities safe. 

“Tim was more than just a coworker… he was a true friend and strived to make the world a better place,” said Eric Smith, CEO. “This is a tragic loss for the Brooks Equipment family, and he will be greatly missed.” 

Arrangements are currently being made and more information will be provided as it becomes available.

Cindy Howell is again the Administrative Manager for GAFSED. As most members know, Cindy works at Swift Fire Protection and has been an active part of GAFSED for many years. Please contact her should you have questions or need assistance for membership or training at 706-283-8459 or e-mail 


The National Fire Protection Associa-tion (NFPA) Standards Council has approved the application of Chris Hendrix of Hendrix Fire Protection in Statesboro to the technical committee made up of manufacturers, enforcement, special experts, installer maintainers, users, consumers and insurance representatives.  Congratulations Chris! The GAFSED Board thanks you for volunteering your time to our industry and association.

James Crawley Named 2011 Georgia Fire Inspector of the year
James Crawley began his fire service career with the Thomson Fire Department in 1977 as a volunteer firefighter. He completed his Basic Firefighters Diploma, Apparatus Engineer Diploma, and First Class Firefighters Diploma by 1984. He received a degree from Georgia Military College in Business Management in 1985. He worked for the City of Thomson Fire Department as Engineer/Lieutenant from 1980 to 1987. In 1987 he was employed by the Georgia State Fire Marshal’s Office as inspector and investigator.

During his employment with the Georgia State Fire Marshal’s Office he has work as fire inspector, fire investigator, fire educator, fire instructor, and building plan reviewer. He currently holds title “Investigation Specialist” with the Georgia State Fire Marshal’s Office while handling duties for special investigations in contractor licensing fire sprinkler contractors, portable fire extinguisher contractors, and fixed fire suppression contractors to ensure compliance with state codes, regulations, and laws. He has worked in the field on special projects as assigned by the office such as the 1996 Olympics, Georgia Dome, Medical College of Georgia construction, UGA construction, served on several grand jury request investigations for local counties, special public assembly overcrowding inspections, and on call instructor for the Georgia Fire Academy in the subject area of fire inspections.

He has been awarded as City of Thomson, “Firefighter of the Year for 1979, 2005, and 2007. He has been awarded as Georgia State, “Firefighter of the Year for 2006. He received his Associate of Fire Science from Georgia Military in 1995. He has served on several boards for the Georgia Fire Academy, Georgia Firefighters Standards and Training, and Georgia Fire Safety Symposium Board. He is currently is on the board or director for the Georgia Fire Inspector Association as the Past-President


The GAFSED Board was happy to have Georgia State Fire Marshal Dwayne Garris in attendance at their January Board meeting. Dwayne gave a brief update of the SFMO to the board. He was happy to report that in September he was approved to add 3 building and 1 hazmat inspectors to staff as well 1 fire investigator and K-9. He has already hired the first inspector; Carl Engleman (previously from South Florida) for the North Georgia region, Dwayne asked that GAFSED please make him feel welcome to Georgia.
Also discussed by Mr. Garriss was the new Life Safety Training Lab being renovated on the campus of the Georgia Public Safety Training Center in Forsyth. Under the direction of GPSTC’s new director Tim Bearden the vision is a lab with various life safety systems , i.e. sprinkler risers, kitchen, industrial dc, clean agent, fire alarm, etc. installed to provide  for the “hands on” training of AHJ’s, safety officials and industry professionals. Dwayne stated the need of donations of equipment and labor to make the lab the premier fire lab in the south.
To donate equipment, expertise or time to the lab Contact the SFMO office at: 404-783-7081
or contact the GAFSED Office for more information.
Donations are tax deductible


Atlanta – Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgens announced that Dwayne Garriss has been appointed to serve as State Fire Marshal for the State of Georgia.   “I am today announcing that Dwayne Garriss, who has served as Assistant State Fire Marshal for over 17 years, and Acting State Fire Marshal for the past six months, will assume the role of State Fire Marshal,” Hudgens said. “Dwayne is a 22 year veteran of the State Fire Marshal’s Office and is well known and respected by the fire service community and the many stakeholders this office serves. Please join me in congratulating and supporting Dwayne on his new position and role for our organization.”

Office Of Safety Fire Commissioner * Ralph T. Hudgens, Commissioner

To read the entire press release CLICK HERE

Randy Carlisle Will Be Missed

Randy Carlisle was a great man and respected by all who knew him.  As one of the founders and current president of GAFSED, he has helped develop GAFSED into one of the best associations of it’s type in the country.  Randy not only had a vision of how to improve our industry, but also had the ability to get things done.  He will be missed more than words can express, and will never be replaced. Randy was an honest, loving, caring and generous man in his community, church, business, this association and most of all to his family. His spirit will forever live on  in GAFSED.

A very heartfelt Thank-You is extended to all of you in GAFSED for all your prayers and concern during Randy’s sudden passing.  For those of you who were part of the 2,000 plus people who waited in line almost four hours on Monday night for visitation; for those of you that attended his funeral on Tuesday; for those of you who sent flowers and traveled hundreds of miles to pay your respects; you will never know how much it meant to Theresa and Cami, Randy’s wife and daughter.  Randy was much more than a boss, he was our friend.  He loved the business he and his dad started over 35 years ago.  He took pride in the work H & R did.  And he was always concerned about doing the right thing.  That’s why he loved GAFSED and devoted so much of his time and talents to it.  You all were part of his extended family.  He always used to say, “doing what’s right isn’t always popular, but doing what’s popular isn’t always right”.  His love for this business and for you was evident every time I heard him in his office typing away on his keyboard comprising an e-mail to send out, or heard him laugh while he was on the phone with one of you.  Man, how he loved to laugh.  We here at H & R will surely miss him, but he wanted to make sure that his business and legacy went on.  We will strive to carry on with the same measure of honesty, knowledge, and concern for our industry as Randy did.  He would expect no less from us… or you.  We look forward to seeing you at Stone Mountain on September 23rd and 24th.  Thanks so much for all your prayers and support,

                                                                            Arnold, and the H & R family .

Congratulations to Mr. Carl Horst, and Mr. Dwayne Garriss

Congratulations to Mr. Carl Horst, Active GAFSED Member and Mr. Dwayne Garriss, Honorary GAFSED Member for the great accomplishments both have made within our industry.  It is an honor to serve alongside both these men. We, as an Association and the fire safety industry will be well represented with the knowledge they will offer to each committee.

NFPA Appoints Carl Horst  

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards Council voted on October 20, 2010 in San Antonio, TX. to appoint Carl Horst, Vice President of Security Fire Equipment Company, Inc. of Valdosta, Georgia a Principle Member of the Technical Committee for the NFPA 10 Standard for Portable Fire Extinguishers. Carl will represent the Georgia Association of Fire Safety Equipment Dealers (GAFSED) as an Installer/Maintainer (IM) representative. The Technical Committee consists of recognized professionals worldwide that are tasked with the development and revision of the NFPA 10 standard. NFPA develops, publishes, and disseminates more than 300 consensus codes and standards in 7 languages, intended to minimize the possibility and effects of fire and other risks. Virtually every building, process, service, design, and installation in society today around the world is affected by NFPA documents.
Honorary GAFSED Member to Serve as ICC Sectional Director
The Georgia Association of Fire Safety Equipment Dealers (GAFSED) would like to congratulate Georgia Assistant State Fire Marshal Dwayne Garriss on his recent election as Director for the International Code Council (ICC) in the Sectional Seat of area “F” which includes the southeastern Area Regions VIII and IX with the ICC. Voting took place during the ICC meeting in Charlotte, NC. During October. Special thanks also go out to the voting representatives from Southeastern States and Georgia for voting with confidence for Mr. Garriss.

NAFED/ ICC Certification

NAFED/ ICC Certification - Install, Inspect, Service or Test

See Policy & Download forms here NAFED Certification Renewal Policy

Fire Extinguisher Recalls & Safety Bulletins

U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Warning

with model numbers FX340SC, FX340H, FX340GW, XL5MR, FX210R, FX340SC-2, FX210W, XL2.5TCZ-4, E-340-3 and with manufacture dates between October 2007 and April 2008. “Kidde” and the model number can be found on the label on the front of the extinguisher. The manufacture year is on the bottom of the extinguisher. If your extinguisher is one of the listed model numbers and is marked with the year 07 or 08, contact Kidde to determine if you have a recalled extinguisher.
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