President’s Message

It is an honor to serve as President of the Ohio Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators for the 2018-2019 term. The International Association of Arson investigators is an organization dedicated to providing “active support to fire, arson, and explosion investigation professionals through leadership in education, training, professional development, certification, networking, advocacy, and the provision of resources.”

Throughout my career, I have been the beneficiary of countless hours of quality training sponsored by the International Association of Arson Investigators, both on the international and chapter levels. My knowledge has increased exponentially through my involvement in this organization and I have made many professional contacts and friends through my affiliation with the International Association of Arson Investigators. I’ve seen many changes in the methodology utilized in fire investigations, as well as vast improvements in the communication between public and private sector agencies. When working with other investigators on the common goal of determining how a fire occurred and what is necessary to prevent future fires, the networking opportunities from which you benefit as a member of the International Association of Arson Investigators cannot be overstated.

We are looking forward to the 2019 Educational Seminar hosted by the Ohio Chapter. The seminar is scheduled to take place in March, 2019 at the Ohio Fire Academy. Please consider attending. The scheduled speakers and topics will provide valuable training to the attendees. With that in mind, if you have any topics you would like to see at future training sessions, please communicate it with one of the board members.

I encourage all members to take full advantage of the resources available through the International Association of Arson Investigators. I also encourage members to pursue available certifications through the International Association of Arson Investigators because these credentials only serve to enhance your professional standing.

Currently, the Ohio Chapter has strong representation on the international level. Ohio Chapter members hold positions as Past President and on the Board of Directors. This year, the Ohio Chapter supports both Trace Lawless in his efforts for reelection to the Board of Directors and Past President Bob Cabral regarding his nomination for a Board of Directors position on the IAAI Foundation. The Ohio Chapter supports his efforts as well.

I encourage all Ohio Chapter members to participate in the election process. Representation by Ohio members at the international level can only serve to benefit all Ohio Chapter members. Please take time to vote when the voting period opens. The Ohio Chapter is the #1 chapter. We are strong and can have a positive influence on the elections.

With elections in mind, I ask Ohio Chapter members to become involved. Based on the nominations at the August 2018 Annual Meeting, we do not have enough candidates to fill all Ohio Chapter board positions. Please consider becoming involved or nominating a colleague for a position on the Board of Directors. The nominations period is open until May 5, 2019.

Recently, we lost long time Ohio Chapter member Brian Beach. Brian was always willing to help with anything requested of him and assisted in coordinating several training sessions. His efforts will not be forgotten, and we can be comforted by the friendship he provided. In remembrance, the Ohio Chapter donated to the college funds for his children.

I ask you to please get involved. Our chapter is only as strong as the efforts put forward by the membership. If you have ideas for future training, please communicate them. If you have concerns, please let me know. I look forward to another successful year for the Ohio Chapter.

Rob Raker, IAAI-CFI
Ohio Chapter of the IAAI


Upcoming training opportunities in Ohio and through the International.

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