FireWise Learning Academy Presents

2nd Annual GVFCA Labour Relations Seminar

Executive Airport Plaza Hotel

Join us to hear from a team of legal experts, labour relations specialists and notable speakers for insight and guidance on current topics.

About this Event

Who should attend?

The first day, Wednesday, February 27, is open to exempt Fire Officers and HR Professionals from any industry, including local governments, that participate in labour relations. We invite all members of the fire service, HR Professionals and local governments to join us for the second day, Thursday, February 28.

What you'll get

  • interactive seminar led by experts in the field (Download Agenda)
  • the opportunity to have your topic questions answered by experts
  • education and guidance on current issues
  • downloadable copy of presenter's slides
  • share, network and connect with others in your industry
  • completion certificate
  • delicious lunch

Download Brochure


Day 1 - Wednesday, February 27, 2019

John Saunders

John Saunders - Hicks Morley

John is a senior labour and employment lawyer in Hicks Morley’s Toronto Office.  He has over 30 years of experience advising municipalities and fire departments.  John’s practice includes acting as spokes-person at collective agreement negotiations for fire departments, presenting at fire interest arbitrations or acting as the municipal nominee at those arbitrations.  He does rights arbitrations, human rights applications and wrongful dismissal litigation.  He has particular expertise in Coroner’s Inquest involving Fire Departments.  He assists many municipalities across the country as they address the particular labour and employment issues in their Fire Departments.

Julia Nanos

Julia Nanos - Hicks Morley

Julia is a labour and employment lawyer at Hicks Morley in Toronto. She advises public and private sector employers on a wide-range of labour and employment issues, with particular focus on human rights and accommodation, wrongful dismissal defence litigation, grievance and interest arbitrations, collective bargaining, employment contracts and employment standards. Julia has appeared as counsel for employers before labour arbitrators, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal, and the Superior Court of Justice, and as lead negotiator in collective bargaining negotiations.

Adriana Wills

Adriana Wills - Harris & Co.

Adriana is a partner at Harris & Co. She provides on-going advice and advocacy to her clients in all aspects of labour, human rights and employment. Adriana is frequently involved at an early stage in planning, identifying legal pitfalls and opportunities, particularly in unionized environments. Her services include policy development, daily advice regarding emerging issues, collective bargaining, training and advocacy. She has appeared before arbitrators and the Labour Board, the Human Rights Tribunal, the Supreme Court of BC and the BC Court of Appeal.

Jacquie Griffiths

Jacquie Griffiths - Metro Vancouver's Regional Employers Services

Jacquie is the Director of Regional Employers Services for Metro Vancouver. She and her team provide human resources and labour relations services to the municipalities in the region. Jacquie has also held the position of Chief Negotiator and Associate Executive Director for the BC Public School Employers’ Association and served three terms as a Referee for the Employment Insurance Commission of Canada from 2004 to 2013. In 2009, Jacquie was recognized as one of Business in Vancouver's "40 Under Forty." She is currently BC’s representative on the Canadian Chartered Professionals in Human Resources National Standards Council.

Darryl AinsleyDarryl Ainsley - Division Manager, Collectibe Bargaining, Regional Employers Services, Metro Vancouver

Darryl is the Division Manager, Collective Bargaining, Regional Employers Services for Metro Vancouver. Darryl and his bargaining team provide bargaining and related collective agreement services to the municipalities in the region. Prior to assuming the role of Division Manager Darryl was a negotiator for Regional Employer Services, serving as a spokesperson in Fire, Police, Library, and Inside/Outside bargaining. Before joining Regional Employer Services Darryl was in the post-secondary sector for many years, moving from roles as a faculty member to the position of Manager of Labour Relations at a post-secondary institution where he was responsible for managing grievances, leading local bargaining, and participating in various provincial common tables. 

Alan Winter

Alan Winter - Harris & Co.

Alan is a leading lawyer in workers’ compensation and occupational health and safety issues, representing employers in matters involving assessments, occupational health and safety standards, and workers’ claims for compensation. He was previously retained by the British Columbia government to be the core reviewer of the Workers’ Compensation Act. His recommendations effectively led to a complete rewriting of the Act. Alan also provides advice and representation to public and private employers on labour and employment and has extensive experience in conducting labour negotiations on behalf of private and public sector clients provincially and federally.

Greg Hayward

Greg Heywood - Roper Greyell

Greg has over 30 years of experience as a labour litigator with a respected reputation as a formidable opponent. He represents management and employees in wrongful dismissal lawsuits, labour arbitrations, labour board hearings, human rights tribunal hearings and wrongful dismissal proceedings. Greg has also represented unionized employers in grievance arbitrations and workplace discrimination cases based on age, sex, religion and ethnicity. He is also the firm’s representative in the Employment Law Alliance and sits on the board of directors, giving him the opportunity to draw upon thousands of lawyers in several countries to assist with any client needs.

Day 2 - Thursday, February 28, 2019

Jona Olsson

Jona Olsson - Cultural Bridges to Justice

Jona is the founder and director of cultural bridges to justice, offering cultural diversity programs for non-profit organizations in the US, Canada, UK and Australia. She is also the recently retired Fire/EMS Chief of Latir Volunteer Fire Department in Northern New Mexico. Joining her two passions – emergency services and social justice – Jona offers workshops to brigades, individual departments, and at seminars and conferences. Jona has presented as a keynote speaker for the IAFF, IAFC, International Assn. of Women in Fire and Emergency Services, Ontario Porfessional Firefighters Assn., UK Fire Brigades, Ottawa and Calgary Fire Departments, Women and Firefighting, Australasia (WAFA) plus others in the US, Canada, UK and Australia.

Paul Lesage

Paul LeSage - SG Collaborative Solutions, LLC

Paul worked at Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue for 29 years starting as a firefighter/paramedic and working up through the ranks to Assistant Chief supervising three divisions and over 400 career and volunteer firefighters. Prior to that he was a flight paramedic for 7 years. Paul is a nationally known speaker and educator on the topics of High Reliability Practices, Just Culture Integration, Crew Resource Management, Quality Improvement, and Incident Analysis. He co-wrote the Jones & Bartlett book, "Crew Resource Management, Principles and Practices", and is currently conducting research in situational awareness, team culture, and feedback systems within Healthcare, Fire-Rescue, and EMS.

We've brought together a team of legal experts, labour relations specialists and notable speakers for insight and guidance on a broad range of current labour, organizational and HR topics. This event is now a two-day program with the first day open to exempt Fire Officers and HR Professionals from any industry, including local governments, that participate in labour relations. We invite all members of the fire service, HR Professionals and local governments to join us for the second day for presentations on cultural and diversity programs plus how to build a just organizational culture with high-reliability practices.

Registration and Venue

Wednesday, February 27 + Thursday, February 28 

$549 for Day 1 & Day 2
$349 for Day 1
$295 for Day 2

Executive Airport Plaza Hotel

Richmond, BC V6X 1A3

View Map




Langley Events Centre, Langley BC

February 22, 2018

The Fire Chiefs' Association of British Columbia cordially invites you to join them on February 22, 2018 at the Langley Events Centre as representatives from construction, development, community planning, architecture, design, the insurance and real estate industries and elected officials will come together to discuss and dispel myths about home fire sprinklers. You will have the opportunity to meet with leaders who have spearheaded change within their jurisdictions. We will learn innovate approaches on how home fire sprinklers can benefit your bottom line and your community and, ultimately, help save peoples' lives.

Click here to learn more and to register.

Seventh Annual

Western Canada Emergency Services Leadership Seminar

"Building Better Organizations"

October 24 and 25, 2017

Leduc, Alberta 

FireWise Consulting Ltd. and the City of Leduc Fire Services are pleased to present the Seventh Annual "Western Canada Emergency Services Leadership Seminar".

The Western Canada Emergency Services Leadership Seminar is the only one of its kind in Canada that focuses exclusively on the skills emergency service leaders need to create high performing organizations that anticipate and respond to their community needs. The program is not designed for crisis management but rather to provide tools for inspired leadership.  Exceptional speakers who are committed to sharing practical solutions based on personal experience deliver relevant and timely presentations. As organizations strive to create high performing workplaces that anticipate and respond to dynamic changes the role of leadership becomes increasingly important. This seminar provides the opportunity to hear from recognized leaders and to network with peers from a variety of backgrounds.

Click here to go the Seminar's website for details about this year's speakers and to register. 


Training Partners and Associates

Williams Lake Fire Department

District of Mission Fire Rescue

Fort St. John Fire Department

Fernie Fire Rescue

Radium Hot Springs Fire Rescue

Lethbridge Fire Rescue

Vernon Fire Rescue

Langford Fire Rescue

CFB Esquimalt Fire Rescue

City of Leduc Fire Services

Ottawa Fire Service

Ottawa Police Service

Fort St. John Fire Department

Richmond Fire Rescue

Beaumont Fire Department

Township of Langley

100 Mile House

North Cedar Fire Rescue

Royal Newfoundland Constabulary

City of Markham Fire Rescue

City of Saint Albert Fire and Emergency Services

Summerland Fire Department

Leduc County Fire Services


“I am pleased to say that your report was the slam dunk that my council needed to move forward with their decision. Thank you so much for your insight and efforts on your report. Your review is guiding much of my focus and I am delighted to have such a clear path to follow. Thank you again for all of your assistance.”

Chief Brett Ogino

Sicamous Fire Department

“I am writing to thank you very much for the valuable presentation you gave to our department on the topic of Fireground Command. The content and related information were thought provoking, and I believe will contribute to all members’ decision making and actions in fire and other emergency responses. And again, thank you for a great presentation.”

Chief Dave Balding

Malahat Volunteer Fire Department - Fireground Command

“The RDCK recently contracted with Fire Wise Consulting Ltd. to perform an inspection and audit of 4 rural firehalls in Beasley, Tarrys, Riondel and Winlaw – all small communities in the West Kootenay. The outcome of the assignment has proven to be a valuable tool for the 4 Fire Chiefs and the RDCK. The report is very readable and provides excellent direction in correcting deficiencies in a non-threatening manner.Furthermore, the report has been well received because of the professional and personal approach by Bob Turley and Glen Sanders in developing the report in consultation with the 4 Fire Chiefs. This has been a most positive exercise for the 4 Fire Departments and the RDCK.”

Jim Gustafson, Chief Administrative Officer

Regional District of Central Kootenay

“The audit conducted by FireWise Consulting Ltd. provided us with a baseline of identified items where we need to improve. The audit also provided affirmation of many areas that we are doing the ‘correct’ things in our operation. There are a number of priority items we are working on; developing a new (governing) policy which clearly identifies the level of service we provide, what priority goals/objectives we will achieve in the coming years, a succession planning tool, and continuation of the defined training for our Fire Fighters.”

Chief Larry Badry


“Beaverly Fire Rescue underwent the audit this past winter and we are very pleased with the results. We found that by helping us to determine what needs to be done and by identifying areas needing improvement, we were provided with a base to develop a strategic plan. The process and results confirmed to the Beaverly Fire Rescue Management Committee the various department roadblocks we face, as well as potential support opportunities available to us. By being solution oriented and assisting us with our concerns in ways as simple as providing sample documents for easy incorporation into our system, my own original fears and concerns proved to be unfounded. I believe that having the opportunity to see our own Fire Department from someone else’s perspective is a very useful tool for myself and the Beaverly Fire Rescue officers and firefighters.”

Chief Bruce Perrin


“I was skeptical about having someone come into our hall and do an audit , as I had no help/guidance for the first 20 years that I was in charge of day to day operations which included all administration duties as well. I would not have been comfortable with auditors that I did not know but [FireWise Consulting] put me at ease right away. There was no negativity about the way things were being done with operations or administration on my end. When we went over the audit [they] asked questions, I answered with why / how we do things the way we do and then [they] made suggestions on how / where I could improve. Since the audit was done I have been able to use it to support my budget objectives as long as I spread them over several years. I have recommended to all that would listen that it is in their best interest to have an outside agency do an audit of their hall operations and administration.”

Chief and FCABC Zone Five Director Bryant Kimble

Ferndale Tabor

previous arrow
next arrow