Hail to the Chiefs - Mineola FD Names New Chiefs For 2007 (04/09/07)
The members of the Mineola Fire Department have chosen Scott Holliday, Robert Connolly and Joseph Pratt to lead the department as chiefs of the Mineola Volunteer Fire Department. These three individuals all have extensive emergency service backgrounds in their professional careers and it is the first group of chiefs that were all former members and officers of the Mineola Junior Fire Department.
Chief Holliday was born and raised in Mineola and attended Mineola Public Schools, graduating in 1981. He has been a member of the Mineola Fire Department and Engine Company #3 for the past 24 years. Before joining Engine #3 in 1983, he was a member and an officer of the Mineola Junior Fire Department for several years before going away to college. Chief Holliday has served the department in various capacities including as a lieutenant, captain and warden of Company #3 and he has served the last four years as second assistant and first assistant chief. Chief Holliday is a former chief and life member of the Mineola Volunteer Ambulance Corps. He has been employed for the last 24 years by the Fire Department of the City of New York Emergency Medical Service. He currently holds the rank of deputy chief in charge of EMS training at the EMS Academy at Fort Totten, Queens. He also works as a second deputy chief instructor at the Nassau County Fire Service Academy in Old Bethpage and as a private consultant in the field of emergency management and training. Chief Holliday has a bachelor's degree in fire and emergency service administration from SUNY Empire State College. He is a New York State certified instructor coordinator for EMS and a New York State certified fire instructor. He has completed a course of study with the Department of Homeland Security's Emergency Management Institute and is recognized as a Master Exercise Practitioner. Chief Holliday and his wife Kathleen have two daughters, Patricia, 14, and Teresa, 8, and have owned their own home in Mineola for the past 17 years.
First Assistant Chief Robert Connolly is a lifelong Mineola resident. He attended Mineola Public Schools, graduating in 1989. Rob joined the Mineola Junior Fire Department in 1986. He rose through the ranks of the junior fire department, serving as an officer. In 1990, he entered Truck Company #2, where he has been an active firefighter for the past 17 years. Chief Connolly served as secretary, lieutenant, and captain. Rob was twice awarded Company #2 Firefighter of the Year. In 1999, he was the recipient of the Gold Medal of Valor from the Nassau County Fire Commission and received the Nassau County Firematic Service Award. When his tenure as captain was completed, Chief Connolly joined forces with Ex-Chief Gary Mazur and Warden Bill Gresalfi and together they built up the Mineola Junior Fire Department into the premier junior fire department in the region. Rob was also instrumental in the development of the Mineola Fire Department FAST Team. This team responds to standby at the scene of emergencies in surrounding communities, ready to rescue fallen firefighters. Chief Connolly was a New York State court officer for nine years. His career with the courts included assignments to Brooklyn Criminal Court, Nassau District Court and a promotion to sergeant at the NYS Court Officers Academy in Manhattan. In 2001, he returned to Nassau County to serve as captain of the Nassau County Courts Training Unit. In 2004, Rob left the courts to become a Nassau County Police Officer. He is currently assigned to the Third Precinct. He also works as a second deputy chief instructor at the Nassau County Fire Service Academy in Old Bethpage. For the last two years, Rob has served as second assistant chief of the Mineola Fire Department. Chief Connolly has a bachelor's degree in criminal justice and a masters degree in sociology from St. Johns University. He is a New York State certified fire instructor. Chief Connolly and his wife Diane have two-year-old twin daughters, Megan and Melissa. The girls often ride to fires with daddy. Diane is also a department member, serving as a firefighter in Engine Company #3.
Second Assistant Chief Joseph Pratt was born and raised in Mineola. He is a member of the graduating class of 1980 at Mineola High School. Joe joined Engine Company #1 of the Mineola Fire Department in 1980 and has been a member of that company for the past 27 years. Before joining Engine Company #1, he was also a member and officer of the Mineola Junior Fire Department for several years. He has served the department in various capacities including lieutenant and captain of Company #1. Joe has two sons - Cory, 20, who is a current member of Engine Company #3 and Ryan, 18. Joe has owned a home here in Mineola for the past 22 years. This team of gentlemen was chosen by their peers for their knowledge and expertise and is committed to continuing the excellent service and dedication that the Mineola Volunteer Fire Department has become know for.