Kings Honour for Our Chief Bushfire Control Officer

David Holland Recognised in King's Birthday Honours List

Augusta-Margaret River’s Chief Bushfire Control Officer (BFCO), David Holland, has been recognised in the 2024 King's Birthday Honours List for his outstanding commitment to protecting our community. 

David has been awarded an Australian Fire Service Medal (AFSM), the highest honour for a member of an Australian fire service. The medal is awarded to career or volunteer firefighters for their distinguished service during emergency incidents, and for making a lasting positive impact on fellow frontline personnel, and the local community.

With more than 20 years of experience in emergency services, David has attended over 250 incidents. He is an active member of the Witchcliffe Bush Fire Brigade and Witchcliffe Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service and has been the Shire’s Chief BFCO since 2013 managing local bushfire brigades and fire control officers.
Speaking after the announcement David said he was overwhelmed to have received the accolade.
“I’m stunned, to be honest. When I started volunteering in my local Bush Fire Brigade in 1998 and then the Fire and Rescue Service in 2012, I simply wanted to give back to the community,” he said.

“I’ve always thought it’s a privilege to live here in Augusta-Margaret River, because it’s one of the most beautiful places in the world, and I think we should do something to ensure it remains a great place to live. Some people coach their kids' sports teams, while others, like me, volunteer for their local fire brigade to help keep the community safe.”

David has played a significant role in the emergency response for Margaret River’s 2011 and 2021 bushfires. Following the 2011 fire, he spent a year with the Shire’s recovery team, helping residents who had lost their homes pick up the pieces and rebuild their lives. He also played a significant role in other major south-west bushfires including Meelup (2022), Bridgetown (2022), Nannup (2019) and Waroona-Yarloop (2016).    

A highly regarded leader David has also built strong partnerships with neighbouring local governments and agencies to enhance emergency preparedness and response in the fire-prone community.

Shire President, Julia Meldrum said it was no surprise that David had been recognised for his ongoing contribution to the community.

“David is an exceptional leader and dedicated to serving our community,” she said.

“He participates in state-level committees, then rolls his sleeves up and puts himself in jeopardy to protect people and their homes. At the same time, he cares about his mates and is unwavering in his commitment to the welfare of everyone who volunteers in our local fire brigades." 

"Our community is lucky to have someone like David, and we’re all delighted he has been recognised for this distinguished service to our community.” 

David will receive his medal at a ceremony in Perth in September, and as a recipient of the Australian Fire Service Medal (AFSM) he is now entitled to use the post-nominals of AFSM, after his name.

The annual King's Birthday Honours list highlights the work of outstanding Australians and is part of the official birthday celebrations of King Charles III. The awards were announced on 10 June 2024 by Governor-General, David Hurley.

12 Jun 2024 Topic Type
General News
Augusta, Cowaramup, Gracetown, Karridale and Kurdardup, Margaret River, Prevelly and Gnarabup, Scott River, Witchcliffe
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