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Ladysmith resident and Vancouver fire chief being honoured by Justice Institute of B.C.

Karen Fry to receive honorary doctorate
Ladysmith resident and Vancouver Fire Chief Karen Fry will be presented with an honorary law degree from the Justice Institute of B.C. for her contributions and advocacy for B.C. firefighters. (News Bulletin file photo)

A Ladysmith woman who became Vancouver’s first female fire chief will be presented with an honorary doctor of law degree from the Justice Institute of British Columbia.

At the JIBC spring convocation on June 8, Fry will be honoured for her work toward fire safety improvements including helping to develop a fire safety program for building owners and managers, introducing data analytics to multiple fire departments, and advocacy work on behalf of firefighters.

“Chief Karen Fry has championed fire safety by innovating, building relationships and advocating for legislation that protects the public and fire service professionals, all while serving as a leader and role model for women firefighters everywhere,” said JIBC president Michel Tarko in a news release.

Fry began her career as a dispatcher with Nanaimo Fire Rescue and eventually worked her way up the ranks and was appointed Nanaimo’s fire chief in 2017. In 2020, she accepted a position as fire chief of the Vancouver Fire Department, the largest department led by a woman in Canada. Fry lives in Ladysmith and Vancouver, the release noted.

Along with Fry, Phyllis Webstad, the founder of Orange Shirt Day, will also accept an honorary doctorate for her work advocating and spreading awareness of the history of residential schools in Canada.

READ MORE: Nanaimo’s fire chief hired to become Vancouver’s fire chief

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Bailey Seymour

About the Author: Bailey Seymour

After graduating from SAIT and stint with the Calgary Herald, I ended up at the Nanaimo News Bulletin/Ladysmith Chronicle in March 2023
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