EAST LANSING, Mich. (WOTV) Fire Chief Greg Janik of the Saugatuck Township Fire District in Allegan County was the recipient of the Public Educator of the Year award from the Michigan Fire Inspectors Society (MFIS) at a dinner banquet held at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center in East Lansing on Thursday, September 15, 2016.
Chief Janik was selected to receive the Public Educator of the Year award from a list of statewide candidates because of his leadership and commitment to delivering year-round public education programming in the Saugatuck Public School system and to the citizens throughout the Saugatuck community.
Janik joined the Saugatuck Township Fire District on November 20, 2001 as a paid on-call firefighter. In 2004, he was hired as a full time fire inspector, firefighter, and medical first responder with the department. That same year, he quickly realized the importance and benefits of delivering age-appropriate fire prevention and education programming to school aged students throughout the community. He began the public education program that same year in the community’s school system with the goal of having school-aged youth be the fire inspectors in their home and teach family members about fire safety.
On May 17, 2013, Janik was hired as the Chief of the Saugatuck Township Fire District. That same year, the Chief conducted a community risk assessment to identify and prioritize hazards which impacted the community. It was determined that residents would not only benefit from fire safety education, but also from having smoke alarms installed in homes where they were needed, free of charge.
In 2014, Chief Janik and the Saugatuck Township Fire District were one of the first to join the WOTV Operation Save A Life program. Operation Save A Life provides free smoke and carbon monoxide alarms as well as fire safety information to fire departments and residents throughout West Michigan. Alarms are installed in homes by firefighters or the American Red Cross at no cost to residents. For more information on Operation Save A Life or to schedule your free alarm installation, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll free 1-844-978-4400.