Fire training program manager at Riverland recognized with lifetime achievement award

Published 10:00 pm Monday, June 19, 2017

The Minnesota Council for Continuing Education and Customized Training announced at the 2017 state conference that Brian Staska, Riverland Community College’s fire training program manager, received the lifetime achievement award.

The award is not necessarily an annual award, but is given to nominated and selected candidates who match the eligibility requirements.

Brian Staska

Eligible persons must have served at least 15 years in a customized training/continuing education capacity or 20 years in a combination of customized training/continuing education and positions that directly support this function.

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Eligible candidates must have been significant contributors to the continuing education and customized Training system through the work that they have done. Candidates must be/or have been actively involved with or in support of the MnCCECT organization and its mission.

According to Staska’s nomination form, “As a firefighter for 30 years, Staska “is always looking for new techniques and technologies that keep firefighters safe and allow for better rescue operations for saving civilian lives. His passion for his work is exemplified by his constant striving to keep current in his industry and the continuous improvements he makes to his programming.”

“Brian is a leader in fire training, and other fire trainers know if there is anyone to ask about what’s next in the fire world, it is Brian,” the nomination said.

“Brian works countless hours and volunteers much of his time to ensure that his clients get exactly what they need. He has built an infrastructure for training at Riverland that is best-in-class from a model house to a grain bin rescue training mockup to a burn structure currently in construction. Brian constantly tries to have his training mimic real-life as much as possible, and he is extremely creative in developing simulations and infrastructure to do so.”

Riverland Community College, a member of the Minnesota State system, is a community college that inspires personal success through education. Approximately 9,000 students are served annually through a wide range of credit-based educational opportunities and non-credit courses. Campuses are  in Albert Lea, Austin and Owatonna. Riverland may be found on the internet at

Minnesota State, formerly known as Minnesota State Colleges and Universities includes 30 community and technical colleges and seven state universities serving approximately 400,000 students. It is the fifth-largest higher education system in the United States.