NFPA Completes Election of Board of Directors
R. David Paulison Named New Chairperson of the NFPA BoardJuly 2, 2024 – The National Fire Protection Association® (NFPA®) completed the election of its Board of Directors at its Annual Meeting on June 17, 2024, which included the naming of a new chair, the election of two new members, and the reelection of a third member of the Board.


R. David Paulison has been elected by the NFPA Board of Directors as the new chairperson. Paulison, who has been serving on the NFPA Board since 2015 and was the first vice chair, brings extensive experience in emergency management and fire safety to his new role.


He has had a distinguished career, previously serving as the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and as the U.S. Fire Administrator. He also spent 30 years with the Miami-Dade Fire and Rescue Department, from 1971 to 2001, rising through the ranks from firefighter to becoming Fire Chief in 1992. His leadership and commitment to public safety have earned him the respect of his peers and the broader safety community. As the new chairperson, Paulison will work closely with NFPA’s executive leadership team and board members to continue advancing the organization’s global impact on fire, electrical, and life safety.


Paulison takes over from Russell Leavitt, executive chairman of Telgian Holdings, Inc., who is completing his second two-year term as Board chair. Leavitt made significant contributions to NFPA and the fire safety community during his tenure.


The Board also elected a slate of officers that includes John Bonney as first vice chair, Roger Montembeault as second vice chair, Lou Paulson as secretary, Stacy Welch as treasurer, Reggie Freeman as assistant treasurer, and Russell Leavitt as immediate past chair. Kwame Cooper will continue in his current role as assistant secretary.


In addition, NFPA members elected two new Board members, and a third was reelected to three-year terms on the Board. These individuals bring a wealth of expertise and a shared commitment to NFPA’s mission:

  • Christina Francis, P.E., FSFPE, senior staff fire and regulatory specialist for Tesla, was elected to her first three-year term.
  • David Hittinger, national director of codes and standards at IEC, was elected to his first three-year term.
  • Raj AroraP.E., chief executive officer at Jensen Hughes, who has served on the Board since 2021, was elected to his second three-year term.

Please visit the NFPA press room for this release and other announcements about NFPA initiatives, research, and resources.


About the National Fire Protection Association® (NFPA®)
Founded in 1896, NFPA® is a global, self-funded nonprofit organization devoted to eliminating death, injury, property and economic loss due to fire, electrical and related hazards. The association delivers information and knowledge through more than 300 consensus codes and standards, research, training, education, outreach and advocacy; and by partnering with others who share an interest in furthering the NFPA mission. For more information, visit All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed online for free at


Washington, DC — R. David Paulison, Director of FEMA FEMA/Bill Koplitz