Fire chief earns state award

by: Submitted photo - CRR Fire Chief Tim McLaren, left, accepts award from Michael Kinkade, president of the Oregon Fire Instructors Association.

By John Bowler
   CRR Correspondent
   The chairman of the Crooked River Ranch Phase Reps, Paulette Nordin, reports that her organization of 13 phase reps continues to expand its role to improve communications to Ranchers by keeping them informed of local news and events.
   The Ranch is divided into 16 phases which represent sections of the Ranch as they were opened for development back when it was getting started in the early 1950s.
   A representative in each phase volunteers to act as liaison and communicator between residents in the phase and various organizations serving the Ranch, including the Homeowners Association, Lions, seniors, fire department, sheriff, etc.
   The current Phase Reps organization is probably the most effective and longlasting edition of that group that has risen and disappeared over the Ranch's existence. It's ably directed by Nordin, who frequently updates its website of Ranch news at
   Nordin said she received two calls for assistance recently from Ranchers who did not know who to contact for help. Both were residents of Phase 8 which is represented by Rep Kit Henderson who is also a member of the Ranch Communications Committee.
   One call was from a new resident who needed help to find her three dogs that had escaped from her yard and disappeared from sight. Henderson and Nordin spread the word and descriptions of the dogs to fellow reps in adjacent phases 6 and 7 and they were found and returned to the relieved and grateful owner.
   The other request came from concerned neighbors of a resident who lived alone with his pet and was recovering from major surgery. They took care of his dog while he was hospitalized, and drove him back home from the hospital in Portland after surgery. They needed additional help to continue caring for him.
   Again Henderson was able to direct them to Central Oregon agencies that provided in-home care in situations like that. Both Henderson and Nordin pointed out these were good examples of why they have been trying to collect residents' email addresses so they can receive periodic bulletins from the Phase Reps.
   They both urge Ranchers to submit their addresses to Nordin at 541-570-5564 and call their own phase rep when they urgently need help. A list of phase reps with their telephone numbers can be accessed at www.crookedriver under "Publication"; scroll down to "Newsletters"; under "2011" click on "June" for the latest list.
   Prestigious award to Ranch fire chief
   The website of the Oregon Fire Instructors Association states: "Instructor of the Year Award is presented to the fire service instructor deemed to have had the greatest positive impact on Oregon fire service training during the calendar year preceding the annual conference."
   This year the honor was awarded to Ranch Fire Chief Tim McLaren at the OFIA annual conference in Portland. It was the first time a Ranch RFPD member has won this award, which was presented to Chief McLaren by Michael Kinkade, president of OFIA.
   Maclaren's nomination reads (paraphrased in part):
   "Chief McLaren has coordinated and delivered numerous courses in the Central Oregon region with students participating from around the state. His efforts have brought a high degree of instruction to numerous firefighters and his passion has influenced many on multiple levels in this and past years.
   His impact on the region through training is significant. He is a trainer at heart and has an unmatched passion for helping firefighters succeed. His dynamic teaching style fosters learning and participants enjoy his training.
   In addition to providing high quality training to those that he teaches, Chief McLaren has changed the culture of the CRR RFPD, allowing it to blossom into one that is highly regarded in the region."
   Chuck McFadden, secretary of the Ranch RFPD, commented, "Tim's excellence and devotion as a trainer of firefighters has resulted in almost a doubling of new volunteers and EMT certifications since he became chief of the Ranch Fire Department. We're all very proud of him and grateful to him."
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