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Billy Schmidt
  • West Palm Beach
  • United States
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Billy Schmidt's Groups


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Profile Information

Lives in:
Palm Beach County Fire Rescue
Battalion Chief (ret.)
Years of public service:
Agency structure:
Paid fire department
Top issues in your department:
Firefighter safety, Organization Effectiveness, Budget, Training Delivery Systems
Professional Qualifications:
Firefighter, Paramedic, Driver-Operator, Company Officer, Chief Officer, Training Instructor, Municipal Inspector; Completing Master's in Organizational Leadership, B.S. Human Resource Management, A.S. Fire Science.
Topics you provide training for:
Firefighter training and education on decision making in stressful situations, resource management in complex and dangerous environments, leadership development, strategy and tactics.
Areas of expertise:
Crew Resource Management, Leadership Development, Effective Command, and Team Building.
Billy Schmidt recently retired as a 31-year member of Palm Beach County (Florida) Fire Rescue. In his last position, he served as a battalion chief in operations with responsibilities for resource management, personnel leadership, and high risk incident command for 13 fire stations. He is an adjunct professor in the fire science and bachelor’s programs at Palm Beach State College and an instructor for the National Fire Academy. He is a published author and speaker on a variety of Fire Service issues and is a member of the editorial board for Fire Rescue Magazine. He is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and a member of the Safety & Survival Section. He was the 2005 recipient of Fire Rescue Magazine’s Company Officer of the Year. He has held all field positions in the fire service from firefighter to district chief and has a well-rounded view of their roles and responsibilities.
Web site:

Billy Schmidt's Blog

How To Cure Zombie Management

It’s the week of Halloween, and Zombies are everywhere.There’s even one in my neighbor’s front yard. And yes, they’re in our fire departments too. You’ve seen them, those firefighters walking around unaware of their surroundings. They’re unable to think for themselves; they’re ambulant but require outside direction. How do they get that way? What infects them and transforms them from thinking, engaged firefighters into brain-dead,…


Posted on October 30, 2014 at 5:44am

Is It Time To Change Your Obsolete Leadership Style?

If there’s one frustration I experience more often than others, it’s when someone says, “My leadership style is ….” Why do so many leaders believe they must follow a particular leadership style or model, when most issues can be addressed by a variety of approaches, or even a combination of them? Maybe it’s time to ask ourselves: “Is my leadership style obsolete?”

Today’s fire service leaders are facing more danger, complexity, and uncertainty. And it’s not slowing down. Whether it’s…


Posted on September 25, 2014 at 6:04am

Can Your Administration Team Hit The Target?

By Billy Schmidt

Are you building your fire department administration strategically? How do you find and position the cornerstone members who will ignite interest, introduce new ideas and development, and achieve a dynamically talented team? Can they hit the target?…


Posted on March 6, 2014 at 6:04am

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