Fullerton Fire Chief Wolfgang Knabe has been awarded a Spurgeon Award by the Orange County Explorer Scouting Division.
The award was presented in recognition of Knabe’s support of the Explorer Scouting program in Orange County, including the Fullerton Fire Explorer Post.
Knabe has been Fullerton’s fire chief since 2005, coming to the city from San Luis Obispo, where he was chief from 2002-05. Prior to that, he served 22 years with the Los Angeles City Fire Department, working up the ranks to the position of battalion chief.
While working as firefighter, Knabe also continued his education, earning both a bachelor’s degree in management and a master’s in public administration from California State University, Northridge. In addition, he is a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program.
Knabe is a member of the California Fire Chief’s Association, the California State Firefighters’ Association, the Los Angeles Chief Officers’ Association, and the Orange County Chief Officers Association. When his schedule allows, he also teaches fire science courses at the community college level.
Knabe and his wife, Heather, have five children and two grandchildren.
The award was presented at the 21st Annual Spurgeon Award luncheon Sept. 17. Knabe was one of three award recipients. The other two recipients were Garden Grove Police Chief Joseph Polisar and Huntington Beach Mayor Cathy Green.
The award is named in honor of William H. Spurgeon III, a pioneer in Orange County Scouting programs and considered to be the “father” of Specialty Explorer programs, such as Fire and Law Enforcement Explorer units.