Stella Hickey (OR) Named Fire Corps Advocate of the Year
Fire Corps State Advocate Stella Hickey (OR) has always had a passion for volunteering. Her commitment and dedication to Fire Corps, supporting the fire and emergency services, and helping departments achieve more through Fire Corps has led her to be named Fire Corps’ Advocate of the Year.
An early back injury left Stella unable to pursue becoming a paramedic, but when her husband decided to become a volunteer firefighter she wanted to find a way to also contribute to the service. “Nothing is more rewarding than working alongside brave men and women whose kindness seems to have no end,” she says.
Stella was asked to help plan events and host social functions at the department, and in 2007 she started the Hermiston Fire Corps program for the Hermiston (OR) Fire and Emergency Services. Her enthusiasm to pass on the volunteer message and assist other departments led her to take on the role of Fire Corps State Advocate for Oregon in 2009.
Over the past year, Stella has worked tirelessly to enhance Fire Corps in her state. She has devoted over 900 hours as an Advocate and reached almost 1,800 people with the Fire Corps message. Her work to expand the program led her to be named as the Secretary for the OR State Citizen Corps Advisory Board and also the Secretary/Treasurer for the OR Volunteer Firefighters Association.
Stella has gone above and beyond in her role as an Advocate. She is part of the Fire Corps Speaker’s Bureau, has acted as a peer-mentor to other Fire Corps Advocates, helped identify additional Advocate representatives in other states, and personally reached out to help departments in states without an Advocate start and implement programs.
“Volunteering is a joy and one of the most rewarding things I have ever done,” Stella said. “I started out with some basic knowledge of the fire service, but now I have even greater respect for this profession. Building Fire Corps is something I am proud to be a part of and look forward to continuing.”
In addition to being a devoted volunteer, Stella is married to a volunteer firefighter and has four girls, all under the age of six.