National Wildland Firefighter Day

To: Interagency wildland fire community

From: External Affairs, National Interagency Fire Center

Subject: National Wildland Firefighter Day- July 2.

The National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC), in cooperation with the National Day Committee, has established July 2 as the first annual National Wildland Firefighter Day, which previously did not exist. This day will provide countless opportunities for public outreach, events and recognition and can be used to promote existing wildland fire management programs and initiatives such as the National Cohesive Strategy, interagency cooperation, fuels management, wildland fire response, and more.

Background: Currently, the following national days are recognized by the wildland fire community but are not specific to wildland firefighting – they focus on municipal structure firefighters:

• International Firefighter Day – May 4
• National Firefighter Suicide Awareness Day – September 24
• National Fallen Firefighters Day – First Sunday of October (normally a weekend full of events)

A formal request was approved by the National Day committee,, to create and register a national day dedicated specifically to wildland firefighters and the wildland fire community.

National Wildland Firefighter Day recognizes all federal, state, local, contract and international firefighters, along with support staff by spotlighting their dedication and hard work. With NIFC as the sponsor, National Wildland Firefighter Day provides an opportunity to unify the wildland fire community and showcase interagency cooperation and collaboration.

The Bureau of Land Management Fire program covered the administrative cost associated with registering the day. The one-time fee permits NIFC and the wildland fire community to “copyright” the day as a specific wildland firefighter recognition event. A description will be added to the National Day website and calendar which is a story source for over 20,000 media outlets nationally. This type of networking increases national visibility and social media engagement.

To pay tribute to wildland firefighters and support personnel, the National Wildland Firefighter Day can be recognized by, but not limited to, the following:

• Hosting a Wildland Firefighter Day BBQ.
• Establish a proclamation for the day.
• Create banners to hang up outside fire stations, on fire trucks during parades, etc.
• Create social media content, a news release, and other types of communications and outreach
• Remembering and honoring all wildland firefighters on July 2 during the Week of Remembrance, June
30 to July 6.

Next Steps: The NIFC external affairs group will be creating a communication plan and a toolkit that will be shared with all NIFC partners. All agencies, partners, committees, and groups will have the opportunity to contribute ideas, communications, outreach efforts and other tactics to reach a broad audience in recognizing and celebrating National Wildland Firefighter Day. Once a final communications plan is developed, NIFC external affairs will conduct broad internal and external outreach efforts to promote the day and recognize the wildland fire community.