In recognition of Clive Sparks

I rise today on behalf of the Liberal Party to honour and pay tribute to retired fire chief of the Whitehorse Fire Department and vice-president of the Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs, Mr. Clive Sparks.

This is a man who has dedicated 45-plus years of his life in the service of protecting all who reside in and visit the Yukon. Mr. Sparks not only served as the fire chief for Whitehorse, but he was also one of the co-founders of the Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs established in 1992. He has held the position of vice-president for the Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs since that time and provides expertise on a national level and is a member of the Fire Chief Officer Designation Committee for the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs.

Mr. Sparks will be stepping down as vice-president of the association at this year’s annual general meeting to be held in Dawson this August.

I say with the utmost sincerity that there have been few who have contributed more to the understanding and the development of the challenging and dangerous discipline of firefighting. The Yukon Territory is extremely fortunate to have enjoyed the leadership, the experience and the expertise that Clive Sparks has provided.

Today’s fire service environment calls on mentors and leaders capable of working in concert with others and on those able to collaborate in creative endeavours and initiatives and to inspire, and all contribute without dominating any undertaking. This is a remarkable skill that Mr. Sparks brought and continues to bring to every endeavour that he embarks upon.

It is his incredible poise and style in contributing his best to all of his undertakings that creates an environment that draws the very best from his colleagues. Mr. Sparks’ contributions have given life, breadth and depth to the message and to the vision of Yukon’s fire services. He gifts with his talents, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Sparks has an exceptional way of bringing a team together, as was evident leading up to and during the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs 100th anniversary conference, which took place here in Whitehorse, where Mr. Sparks sat on the conference committee and was the host fire chief of the event, which is still being talked about on a national level.

Chief Sparks applies best practices for fire service solutions, blending his technology and professional savvy, along with his commitment to his own development.

Throughout his career, Chief Sparks’ unending love for the fire services created a drive that never ceased to encourage those around him. Fortunately, his legacy will live on through the countless firefighters he has mentored. I am very proud to honour such a tremendous member of our community. Passion of this level is rare, but it is a standard that Mr. Sparks has set for himself, his fellow firefighters and his community members. On behalf of the countless individuals who have benefited from his services, I want to thank the man, Clive, for the personal sacrifices that he has made for his community. I also want to salute him as Fire Chief Clive Sparks for his contributions as he retires after 45-plus years of service.

I would also, at this time, like to take time to ask my colleagues in helping me welcome to the House today some people who have been a part of this journey with Fire Chief Sparks. We have the Mayor of Whitehorse, Dan Curtis. We also have, with Clive, his partner, Kim. We have Kevin Lyslo, the new fire chief for Whitehorse, and also members of his fire department. Also in the gallery, we have retired Mayor of Whitehorse, Bev Buckway, and the Yukon fire marshal, Dennis Berry, with members from his department as well. We also have Whitehorse airport fire chief — Doug Burgis — and members. We also have members from various Yukon fire departments — Henry Procyk, the president of the Dawson Firefighters Association — and also from the Association of the Yukon Fire Chiefs, president Jim Regimbal.

I welcome everybody to the gallery today.