COLUMBIA, Mo. – A 20-year veteran of the Columbia Fire Department (CFD) was recognized Oct. 24 as the top fire service instructor for 2012-13 by University of Missouri Extension’s Fire and Rescue Training Institute (MU FRTI), according to David Hedrick, director of the institute.

Jim Weaver, CFD battalion chief and longtime MU FRTI instructor, received the institute’s Instructor of the Year Award for 2012-13 at the CFD training facility in Columbia. The award was to have been presented at MU FRTI’s annual instructors’ conference earlier in October in Lake Ozark, but Weaver was unable to attend the ceremony.

“Instructor Weaver exemplifies excellence in fire service instruction and we are proud of his dedicated service to the institute,” said Hedrick.

Weaver has been adjunct instructor with MU FRTI since 1994. He joined the CFD in 1993 after beginning his firefighting career in California. Weaver previously served CFD as assistant fire marshal, fire captain and training officer.

Two other MU FRTI instructors also received recognition. Bruce Piringer, adjunct instructor and former director of the institute, was first runner-up for instructor of the year honors. Jon Trent, adjunct instructor and fire chief with the Nixa Fire Protection District, was second runner-up.

“Through the classes they teach, MU FRTI instructors enable Missouri firefighters do their work better and more safely by providing the best and most relevant training and education,” Hedrick said.

MU FRTI provides comprehensive continuing professional education to Missouri’s fire service and emergency response personnel. Last year more than 13,800 fire and emergency service first responders received training from the institute, which has a cadre of more than 160 adjunct instructors.

For more information about the institute, go to

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