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Deputy State Fire Marshal Robert “Rocky” Reed Receives Investigator Of The Year Award

June 20th, 2022 by WCBC Radio

Deputy State Fire Marshal Robert "Rocky" Reed is the recipient of the 2021 "James C. Robertson, Deputy State Fire Marshal of the Year" award. "Deputy Reed exemplifies the overall desire and commitment our investigators embrace to ensure the safety of Maryland's citizens," stated State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci. The award was presented to him during the Maryland State Fireman's Annual Convention and Conference in Ocean City.

Deputy Reed was nominated by his supervisor, Chief Deputy Jason Mowbray, former commander of the Western Region. Reed was praised for his consistent performance throughout the year. Reed was in the top ten employees statewide for the number of investigations, inspections, and criminal arrests. DSFM Reed was cited for conducting thirty-two fire investigations during 2021, five of which were criminal in nature. He made four arrests in 2021, closing out cases from 2020 and 2021. In addition to his fire investigations, Reed also conducted forty-nine fire safety inspections.  "Through his performance and work ethic, Deputy Reed has positively impacted the citizens of Western Maryland and the employees of the Western Regional Office. There is no question that Deputy Reed's efforts have and will continue to result in a safer community." Mowbray said. 

Deputy Reed regularly volunteers for extra duties to support the Agency, region, and local law enforcement. DSFM Reedhas volunteered and participated in a local community policing program known as Police Providing Presents in Garrett County and Shop with a Cop in Allegany County for the last several years. These programs provided an opportunity to have positive interaction between law enforcement and local youth. 

While DSFM Reed brings substantial law enforcement experience from his prior twenty-plus year career with the Cumberland Police Department, he's shown great initiative at identifying and attending fire investigation-specific training. In his short career with the OSFM, DSFM Reed has attended numerous training classes provided through the National Fire Academy, and the International Association of Arson Investigators. Reed is a Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator through the National Association of Fire Investigators (NAFI). This credential establishes a qualification for conducting and testifying in court to fire and arson investigations. DSFM Reed has also assisted local law enforcement on critical incidents through his training and experience as a hostage negotiator.

Reed was nominated with five other Deputy State Fire Marshals from each Agency's regional offices as contenders for the award. All six deputies were applauded for their dedication to the Office of the State Fire Marshal. 

"It is never easy to select the recipient of this award, not because of a dearth of candidates, but rather because of the difficulty in selecting just one recipient from the many viable candidates within the agency," State Fire Marshal Geraci said. "The Office of the State Fire Marshal strives to hire the best candidates, train them well, and then demand professionalism and high achievement from each."