ESCAMBIA COUNTY, Fla. (WKRG) — Escambia County Fire Rescue Assistant District Fire Chief Yoshimi Core was named the 2022 Volunteer Fire Officer of the Year by the Florida Fire Chiefs’ Association on Tuesday, Jan. 3.

Core began his career with Escambia County Fire Rescue in 2015. Prior to his career with the county, Core joined the U.S. Navy as a firefighter in 1984, serving until his retirement in 2014. His time with the Navy included a three-year stint with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels as a Command Master Chief. Following his naval career, Core worked as a financial advisor for First Command before choosing to follow his father-in-law’s advice to become a firefighter for Escambia County. 

“I’m honored to be named the 2022 Volunteer Fire Officer of the Year among all of the other great firefighters out there,” said Chief Core. “There are so many more deserving firefighters than me that set the example, train their juniors and continue learning. At the end of the day, taking care of people will help more people to serve their communities and to help answer the call of volunteer service.”

Since 2022, Core has served as the assistant district fire chief for Escambia County Fire Rescue. Throughout his time with ECFR, he has consistently exhibited dedication and professionalism with his fellow firefighters. 

“Chief Core has been instrumental in carrying out his duties as an assistant district chief, but he has also gone above and beyond in many circumstances,” Deputy Fire Chief Paul Williams said. “He has a strong military bearing from his past service with the U.S. Navy and brings that bearing and professionalism to ECFR. Chief Core has been a mentor to many volunteer members and has most recently been working with the training division to enhance training for the department’s volunteer personnel. We are fortunate to have Chief Core as a member of the department and look forward to many years of service to come.”

Core will be honored on Wednesday, Jan. 18, during the opening ceremonies at Fire-Rescue EAST in Daytona Beach, Fla. 

When discussing his recent honor, Core offered a few words of advice, “What is the best use of your time right now? Then go do it.”