FOR nearly four decades, Brett Davies has been protecting people.
The Fire and Rescue NSW Area Commander Metropolitan North has been honoured for his dedication with the highest accolade an Australian firefighter can receive - the Australian Fire Service Medal - in the Australia Day Honours.
Chief Superintendent Davies, who was appointed to the service in 1980, was singled out for his "commitment and dedication to operational leadership", Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) Commissioner Paul Baxter said.
"Since Chief Superintendent Davies' appointment to FRNSW in 1980 as a permanent firefighter, he has given over 38 years of unwavering service," he said.
"Since 2012, he has led firefighters from Newcastle, Central Coast and the Lower Hunter regions of NSW.
"Throughout his career, Chief Superintendent Davies has demonstrated a passion to help and lead others, using expert knowledge and experience. His dedication to service has seen him lead numerous firefighters through many bushfires, large building fires, and significant flood events that have impacted the communities he proudly serves."
In 2017, Chief Superintendent Davies used his experience to help with disaster and humanitarian relief efforts in Canada during a devastating fire period.
"He was a key leader of the multi-state, multi-agency 48-member Australian contingent that helped to battle fires that had been burning for several weeks," Commissioner Baxter said.
The fire chief also praised Chief Superintendent Davies' work in the development of firefighters and said he was "highly regarded" by his peers.
"His selfless attitude sees him continually investing in others, providing mentorship and guidance in a friendly and open manner, and supporting FRNSW to fulfil its purpose to protect the irreplaceable," the Commissioner said.
Chief Superintendent Davies is one of three FRNSW firefighters to be awarded the prestigious medal, which will be presented at a ceremony later in the year.