IAFC Wildland Conference Succeeds in Challenging Economy

Fairfax, VA - The IAFC has announced that this year’s Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) Conference was a huge success with an increase in attendance and a sold-out show floor. The event, held March 22-26 in Reno, Nev., attracted over 600 attendees, including fire chiefs, company officers, wildland firefighters, and land-use and community planners, as well as representatives from several federal and state fire agencies.

“We were very pleased with the increase in attendance this year, particularly given these difficult economic times. It was very satisfying to witness the enthusiasm of the attendees and the lively discussions that occurred in most of the breakout sessions. Throughout the five days, it was reassuring to see so many folks stay engaged all the way through to the closing session,” said Don Artley, Montana state forester (retired).

“The WUI conference in Reno continues to prove itself as a quality venue for fire service leaders to openly discuss emerging wildland fire topics,” said Chief Bob Roper, chair of the Wildland Fire Policy Committee.

Outstanding education, growing attendance and a one-stop-shop for purchasing makes WUI the ideal conference for industry professionals. This year’s education had three tracks, focusing on prevention, education and mitigation; suppression strategies and tactics; and wildland fire policy. The conference also offered several in-depth seminars where attendees could earn NWCG and NIMS certifications.

The show floor continues to grow. This year, 10 vehicles were on display, which was a significant increase from previous years. Several companies also showcased new technology to help address the application to the WUI problem. The show floor was also the location for the crowded and popular networking reception sponsored by Farmers Insurance.

Farmers Insurance CEO Robert Woudstra said, “Farmers is proud to partner with the IAFC at these very important conferences. As the third largest writer of homeowners and auto insurance in the Untied States, our company appreciates that the WUI conference provided first-hand knowledge of how the fire service is tackling the year-round fire threat in America. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the IAFC.”

The success of WUI 2009 was also made possible by the collaborative efforts of the USDA Forest Service, US Department of Interior, National Association of State Foresters, Nevada State Fire Chiefs and NFPA Firewise Communities.

For more information on the other conferences produced by the IAFC, visit To book your exhibit space for WUI 2010, contact Kelly Casillo at


About the IAFC
The International Association of Fire Chiefs represents the leadership of over 1.2 million firefighters and emergency responders. IAFC members are the world's leading experts in firefighting, emergency medical services, terrorism response, hazardous materials spills, natural disasters, search and rescue, and public safety legislation. Since 1873, the IAFC has provided a forum for its members to exchange ideas and uncover the latest products and services available to first responders.

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