Gurnee Fire Department Public Education Officer Receives the American Legion Firefighter of the Year Award

For Release: 
Jul 28, 2010



GURNEE, IL - ­ July 28, 2010 - The American Legion announced that Christopher J. Koehn, Public Education Officer for the Gurnee Fire Department, has been named as recipient of the 2010 “Department Firefighter of the Year Award”. During the American Legion Department Convention at the Prairie Capital Convention Center in Springfield, Chris was selected as Illinois’ nominee for the National Convention.

In 2005 Chris received the Wayne Luecht Memorial Award. This award is an educational scholarship that was developed to pay tribute to Northbrook Fire Department Assistant Chief Wayne Luecht. On June 11, 1999, Assistant Chief Luecht was critically burned from an electrical explosion. He succumbed to his injuries on June 21, 1999. In recognition and honor of Wayne Luecht's many years of dedication to fire/burn prevention work, the Illinois Fire Safety Alliance (IFSA) offers this educational scholarship award each year. The Breakfast Exchange Club of Gurnee in 2007 selected Chris as their recipient of the Gurnee Fire Employee of the Year.

As Public Education Officer, Koehn is responsible for working with the public to ensure there is an awareness of the danger of fire and the steps that can be taken to minimize these risks. In addition, Koehn has co-chaired the event committees for the Lake County Fire Safety EXPO held at Gurnee Mills; is an active participant at Burn Camp; and member of the Lake County Fire Chiefs Northern Illinois Public Education Team. His coordination of public awareness has included the design, implementation and coordination of all our educational programs dealing with fire safety education, burn awareness and injury prevention to civic, school, day care and other community groups.

During an interview with Fire Chief Fred N. Friedl, the Chief/Administrator of the Gurnee Fire Department, he stated, “My nomination letter detailed Chris's dedication, experience, and accomplishments within fire/burn prevention education and how he has made a difference in preventing loss and injuries to the citizens of the Village of Gurnee and Warren-Waukegan Fire Protection District. His hard work, dedication and broad base of knowledge make him an invaluable asset to not only the Gurnee Fire Department, but also the entire community that we serve.”

For more information, interview opportunity, or photos please contact Chief Friedl at 847-599-6600.

For more information about the Gurnee Fire Department, please visit:


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Chief Fred Friedl
Phone: 847.599.6600
Fax: 847.244.8693