Councillor John Horner, chairing this meeting, made the following announcements:
1) Care Leaver National Bench Marking Competition
At the Care Leaver National Bench Marking Forum Warwickshire were once again key leaders of the forum. Umar Teerab and Liss Phillips who work as Family Support Workers in our Corporate Parenting Service organise and facilitate the national forum with a small group of care leavers.
I am delighted to report that this year Liss Phillips won the Best Speech and the Champion of Champions competition. She delivered a heart-warming speech and her peers recognised her as champion of champions. Coming first in both of these is a real achievement.
Huge congratulations to Liss.
Members joined to congratulate Liss Philips.
2) Death of Former Chief Fire Officer, Kieran Amos
It is my very sad duty to report that our former Chief Fire Officer, Kieran Amos died on 23 November after a short illness.
Kieran was CFO for Warwickshire for just over two years before his retirement in July this year. His career in the fire sector spanned nearly 30 years in a range of roles serving the communities of Surrey, West Sussex, and Warwickshire and he had also worked at a national level on the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme and within the National Resilience Team.
Those of us who knew him are very fortunate to have worked alongside such a special person. Physically imposing, he had a larger-than-life personality to match. Kieran was a humble and funny individual but most of all he was genuine, compassionate and kind. These qualities shone through in all that he did including the huge role he played in the response to the pandemic and his work with equality, diversity and inclusion.
He has certainly left a legacy that will be built upon as we continue the work he did to make Warwickshire safer for all.
Our condolences go to Kieran’s family and all those who knew him within the Fire and Rescue Service.
Ben Brook, the current Chief Fire Officer, was invited to make a statement and he shared the tribute that had been read at Mr Amos’ funeral the previous day. The tribute acknowledged Mr Amos’ ‘gentle giant’ character, the difference he had made during his 32 years in the fire service, his passion for making a difference and the positive impact he had on many lives. Mr Amos had possessed a wonderful ability to connect with people which had enabled him to achieve a great deal in Warwickshire. Mr Brook concluded that Mr Amos was a person who would be sadly missed by Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service, Warwickshire County Council and the Fire Service nationally.
Members made the following comments in memory of Kieran Amos
Councillor Andy Crump noted that Mr Amos had very recently retired and had only been aged 50 at the time of his death. He noted the big impression that Mr Amos had made in terms of his leadership, innovation and his contribution to the Pandemic response. His thoughts and prayers were with Mr Amos’ family.
Councillor Sarah Boad echoed previous comments, expressing her sadness at the news. She had many abiding memories of Mr Amos and praised his leadership style and desire to make Warwickshire FRS the best it could be. She noted that he would live on in memory for a very long time.
Councillor Seccombe reflected on Mr Amos’ achievements in his relatively young life. She noted that he was richly talented and helped people be the best they could be. He possessed a genuine belief in people and the ability to forge partnerships and touch hearts. Councillor Seccombe noted that Warwickshire County Council was a much better organisation because of Mr Amos’ tenure and he had achieved a great deal which she trusted the organisation would build upon. She concluded that she was immensely saddened by the announcement but was glad to be able to say that she knew him.
Councillor Adrian Warwick also reflected on Mr Amos’ larger than life character and noted that it was a pleasure to have him attend Overview and Scrutiny. Councillor Warwick observed that he had great memories of a lovely man and Warwickshire was the poorer for his loss.
Councillor John Holland noted that the work Mr Amos had done had been valued by all parties and he shared the sentiment that his loss was deeply unfair. He had met Mr Amos in July before his retirement when his pride in the Fire Service was notable.
Councillor Judy Falp reflected on her first meeting with Mr Amos, and how she immediately felt like she had a good friend. Like others, she felt people were better for knowing him and was deeply saddened by his loss.
A minute’s silence was held in memory of Kieran Amos.