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Engineer Pierce Named Firefighter of the Year for 2023

Hattiesburg, Mississippi – Engineer Dean Pierce was recently named Hattiesburg’s Firefighter of the Year by his peers and administrators at the Hattiesburg Fire Department.

This annual designation is given to one firefighter who performs above expectations and who continues to be a positive role model for younger firefighters. Nominations are asked to look at the scope of work through the eyes of selfless service, technical knowledge, scene management and mentorship.

“This award is steeped in tradition but is exclusive to those who truly earn the title,” said Chief Sherrocko Stewart. “Being named Firefighter of the Year is about action, and it’s clear that Engineer Pierce leads from the front with integrity, is committed to maintaining his own training and invests in the firefighters he also leads and trains.”

Snippets from his nomination packet state:

  • “ENG Pierce has separated himself from others with his selfless service, technical knowledge, scene management and mentorship to younger firefighters.”
  • “When ENG Pierce noticed the faded paint on Engine 1, he used his personal equipment, polishes and waxes to enhance the image of the apparatus. Without much attention, these actions created an esprit-de-corps within the firefighters assigned to the station.”
  • “ENG Pierce consistently promotions new strategies for HFD members to explore and train on in order to create a proactive work environment.”
  • “ENG Pierce’s ability to simplify emergency situations and evaluate specific tasks creates a calming work environment for his team.”
  • “Whether it is assisting in daily station duties or drilling firefighters on proper tactics, ENG Pierce leads by example and promotes the qualities that HFD members should strive to achieve.”

“We are extremely proud of Engineer Pierce and his commitment to making everyone around him better,” said Asst. Chief Chris Carr. “He presents himself as the firefighter we all should strive to be. Our city and department are lucky to have him.”

Nominations are taken from supervisors and peers, with a final decision made by administrative staff. 

“Engineer Pierce is a great example of someone who transferred into our department and then invested himself in the storied history that comes with being a Hattiesburg Firefighter,” said Mayor Toby Barker. “This designation speaks volumes because it comes from his peers. We’re proud to have him among our ranks, and I look forward to seeing his career continue here.”



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