Lieutenant Brian Matzen
The Firefighter of The Year award is one that is given to an individual who clearly goes above and beyond every day. The 2020 Firefighter of the year has displayed a devoted commitment to not only the organization, but to the employees for whom they work with. This individual takes time every day, seven days a week working on projects for the organization and mentoring those around him. Always smiling, his infectious attitude is one that draws individuals to him.
This individual has worked with the organization for over 12 Years and has continuously been an exceptional employee. Because of his passion for working and helping people, he is one of the first names to come up when something important needs to be accomplished.
This individual has voluntarily taken on the tasks of maintaining the department’s webpage, creating videos for training and recruitment, serving as a Station Commander, serving as the department’s bunker gear coordinator, serving as a Live Fire Instructor, serving on the hiring board, serving on the promotional committee, serving on the department’s peer support team, and a member of the department’s honor guard.
He was a four-time recipient of the Employee of the Month, with the most recent in October 2020along with two time recipient of the Firefighter of the Quarter with the most recent being for the Fourth Quarter of 2020.
He was selected as the Employee of the Month for October 2020 along with firefighter of the quarter for the fourth quarter of 2020. He responded to a call for a drowning. The sun had already set and the area was dark with many people around. While searching the area it was discovered that the incident was actually further up the beach, approximately three blocks north of the location. He had already removed the rescue board from the ladder. Realizing moving the ladder truck around to get to the call would waste precious time; he utilized the BC vehicle, which was there to bring himself and the board to the scene. The victim’s father stated she was in the water when he heard her yell help and disappeared. While scanning the waters the crews saw the heads of two people in the water. Paddling out to the victims, the two people in the water and Lt Matzen all held onto the board and were able to slowly bring themselves into shore through the rough surf. This quick thinking certainly saved the life of this young woman who was caught in the rip current.
Lieutenant Matzen continuously displays the dedication and behaviors that the department seeks from all of its members. He is an exceptional employee who possesses talent, skills, abilities, attitude, character, and dedication that makes him deserving of this recognition. Palm Beach Fire Rescue’s core value statement is to act with Integrity, Provide Wow Service and to bring an attitude of Grit every day. Lieutenant Matzen walks the walk every day, always making a positive impact on everyone he encounters. Palm Beach Fire Rescue would like to recognize Lieutenant Brian Matzen, as he displays all of these core values, and more. Lieutenant Matzen has proven that he is worthy of the 2020 Firefighter of the Year Award and it is our distinct pleasure to award him with this honor today.