Fire Career Stories

The NPS wildland fire management program strives to implement its programs using the best information and knowledge. Knowledge is acquired and passed along not only through rigorous scientific studies but also through sharing first hand experiences among fire professionals.

Brit Rosso: Be True to Your Core Beliefs

Brit Rosso, Center Manager for Wildland Fire Lessons Learned, discusses his career experiences and the lessons he has learned in nearly 30 years in the business. Brit talks about learning from mentors, being a mentor, and resources young firefighters can use to further develop their careers. Published August 7, 2012.


Ben Jacobs: An Outlaw and a Hero

Ben discusses the importance of working with and learning from the right people, what sort of person might like a career in wildland fire, and what sort of skills it takes to make it a successful career. Published November 2, 2012.


Ben Jacobs: I can't believe how lucky I am to work here

Ben Jacobs discusses the importance of gaining both operational and administrative skills. In order to advance and make a career in wildland fire, young firefighters should receive an education and learn how to write. Ben describes the importance of mentors throughout his career, lessons he's learned in his relationships with people over the years and how he's learned to make the most of mistakes and bad situations. Lastly, Ben talks about how working for the National Park Service has benefitted him. Published November 2, 2012.


Jun Kinoshita: Ask for the Opportunities

Jun describes his experiences and the people who mentored him through his career. In his unusual career, Jun has served as a fire ecologist at Yosemite National Park for the National Park Service and recently detailed as a smoke jumper for the Forest Service. Published September 4, 2012.