Nick Connolly, a fire technician at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge, received the South Zone Firefighter of the Year Award for his work on the wildfires in the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests for three months this summer.
Connolly’s performance was outstanding; his amount of initiative and work ethic put Nick well above the other nominations received, according to South Zone Fire Management Officer Will Briggs.
Connolly was a part of the Northern Colorado Helitack crew and completed two tasks to become a Firefighter Type 1 and Squad Helicopter crew member.
Connolly was a business administration major with an emphasis on finance, but after graduating realized it was not for him and he needed to work outdoors. He joined the AmeriCorps National Civilian Corps to assist in fire management. He has now been working on fire management for five years and hopes to move up in the ranks to work on fire management year-round.