2021 Annual Conference – St. Louis, MO

2021 Annual Conference – St. Louis, MO

Welcome to the 31st Annual Int’l Educational & Training Symposim

Meet Us in St. Louis!

Where:  St. Louis, MO

When:  August 29 – September 1, 2021

Hotel:  St. Louis Union Station Hotel – Curio Collection Hotel by Hilton


Time until conference starts

August 29, 2021
September 1, 2021
1820 Market St., St. Louis, MO 60331
Call For Papers


2020 was a very challenging year, but we came together as a community and made a commitment to keep the ARFFWG in the forefront of education for the aviation firefighting industry.  During the adversities of  2020, the ARFF Working Group unified firefighters worldwide.  During our 31st Annual Conference we will recognize and celebrate our accomplishments during these challenging times.  Our members will be given the opportunity to share how they managed COVID-19.  Let’s celebrate 2021 by providing the best conference ever!!

Please join us for a celebration at the 2021 Annual Conference in the “Heart” of the heartland, St. Louis, MO.

It’s been a very challenging year for everyone including the ARFF Working Group.  We  have had to cancel three (3) conferences, but plan on having the greatest conference ever had in 2021.  Please join us!

For Budgeting Purposes:

  • Member Attendee Registration = $675
  • Non-Member Attendee Registration = $740
  • Member (10×10) Exhibitor Registration = $1,350
  • Non-Member Exhibitor Registration = $1,745
  • Hotel Rate = $179 (plus applicable taxes)  


  • If Attendee Registration is paid by May 1, 2021 there will be $100 discount.  (Payment must be included with registration)
  • If Exhibitor Registration is paid by May 1, 2021 there will be a 15% discount on any size booth (Payment must be included with registration)



A St. Louis icon since 1894, today the Union Station hotel retains the elegant archways and décor of its famous Grand Hall.  Blocks of City Museums and less than a mile from the heart of Downtown. Enjoy the 3D light show, featuring dramatic flames and a 100-ft waterfall, plus access to the fitness center and seasonal outdoor pool. The Grand Hall lounge, the heart of Union Station, is home to a stylish bar and 3D light show telling the building’s history. 

· 567 Guest Rooms

· WiFi

· 42” TV

· $12 Self Parking

· $40 Valet Parking

· Mini-Fridge in Rooms

· Cuisinart Coffee Makers

· Crabtree & Evelyn Bath Amenities

· Fitness Center

 Grand Hall – Recently renovated, restored and re-opened with lounge seating and a bar, The Grand Hall continues to awe visitors as the Union Station Hotel’s lobby and lounge area. Beyond the history and the food, the Grand Hall Experience at Union Station is complete with the first of its kind high-definition projection mapping experience in the United States. Projected on the Grand Hall’s 65-foot tall ceilings and across the entire space, the 3D entertainment is made up of 30 vignettes, all stretching the barrier of creative design, innovation and story-telling.

The room rate is $179 Single/Double.  To make hotel reservations it is best to go to this Direct LINK.   You may also call 314-231-1234 and ask for the ARF rate.   


A negotiated Self-Parking rate at the hotel is $12.  Valet Parking rate is $40.  There is a penalty for “Early Departure”.  Please notify the hotel prior to check-in if you will need to check-out early.


2021 Awards Program


Sponsorship Opportunities

Application for Funding a Firefighter

Information on exhibitor services will be available in the near future.  Please check back for updates.




Sunday, August 29, 2021

11:00 am – 5:00 pm          Exhibitor Set-Up

3:00 pm – 5:00 pm           Vendor Roundtable

6:00 pm – 8:00 pm          Welcome Reception – Information Exchange Program

Monday, August 30, 2021

8:00 am – 9:00 am          Breakfast w/Exhibitors

9:00 am – 9;30 am          Opening Ceremonies

9:30 am – 10:30 am         Keynote Speaker – Jay Novacek – “There are Always Two Ways to Look at Everything”

10:30 am – 11:00 am        Coffee Break w/Exhibitors

11:00 am – 12:00 pm        Part 1 – UPS 1307 PHL DC-8 Inflight Event — Part 2 – Strategies & Tactics for Cargo Jets – Jess Grigg, Captain UPS Airlines & IPA ARFF Chairman

12:00 pm to 1:30 pm          Awards Luncheon

1:30 pm to 2:30 pm          The Impact of COVID-19  on the Houston Airport System an Emergency Management Perspective – Frank Ciaccio, Division Manager of Safety & Emergency Management

2:30 pm – 3:30 pm           Business Meeting

3:30 pm – 4:00 pm          Airport Index/Section Workshops

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

8:00 am – 9:00 am          Breakfast w/Exhibitors

9:00 am – 10:30 am        F-35 Mishap – A Safe and Effective Response – Geoffrey Finley, Fire Chief – Lockheed Martin

10:30 am – 11:00 am       Coffee Break w/Exhibitors

11:00 am – 12:30 pm       Continued – F-35 Mishap – A Safe and Effective Response

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm         Boxed Lunch

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm          FAA Safety Post COVID, What Lessons Have the FAA Learned and How has FAA Policy Changed Because of COVID-19 – Patricia Hiatt, Deputy Director – Federal Aviation Administration

2:30 pm to 3:30 pm       The Future of the Airport After COVID-19 – Jesus H.Saenz Jr., Director of Airports – San Antonio Int’l Airport

3:30 pm to 4:15 pm        Emergency Response in the (Post) Pandemic Era – Mark Dombroff, Partner/Attorney – Fox Rothschild, LLP

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

8:00 am – 9:00 am          Breakfast w/Exhibitors

9:00 am – 10:00 am        Asiana 214…From the Incident Commanders Perspective – Kyle Merkins, Lieutenant and Anthony Robinson, Captain – San Francisco Int’l Airport

10:00 am – 10:30 am       Coffee Break w/Exhibitors

10:30 am – 11:45 am         FAA Headquarters Update and FAA Technical Center Update – Marc Tonnacliff, ARFF Specialist – Washington, DC and Keith Bagot, Program Manager – FAA Techncial Center – Atlantic City, NJ

11:45 am – 1:00 pm          Lunch w/Exhibitors – Board of Directors Meeting and E-Board Elections

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm          In Flight Emergencies…The Critical Aspect Between the Flight Crew, FAA Tower and ARFF – Mark Crystal, Pilot – ALPA – A Panel Discussion

2:00 pm – 2:45 pm         Patience and Perseverence with the Finish Line in Site.  Advancing ARFF Within our County and State – Larry Lippel, Battalion Chief – Charlotte County Fire/EMS and ARFFWG 1st Vice Chairman

2:45 pm – 3:15 pm          Coffee Break

3:15 pm – 4:15 pm          Using Data to Justify your Agent and Staffing Needs – Ronald Krusleski, Sr. Fire Captain – Houston Fire Dept.  and ARFFWG Chairman

4:15 pm – 5:00 pm         Closing Remarks, Election Results and Announcing the 2021-2022 Board and E-Board Members.