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Farmington Assistant Fire Chief Jeffrey Allbee accepted the Dakota Spirit of Excellence award recently at a ceremony at the fire station with family and friends in attendance.

Allbee is the winner of this inaugural award developed by Dakota Electric Association to recognize first responders and the brave work they do. The award highlights a first responder who demonstrates leadership, dedication to serving others, teamwork, integrity and other attributes.

Fire Chief Jim Larsen speaks highly of Allbee and said he is very committed to his volunteer work with the fire department. He has served as a firefighter since 2006 and is president of the Farmington Firefighters Relief Association, helped organize the Fire Prevention Week open house, and has helped create core values and mission and vision statements for the department.

Jeff Allbee the first winner of the Dakota Spirit of Excellence Award.

Allbee is finishing up Fire Instructor II training, is certified as Fire Officer II, NFPA 472 Hazardous Materials Operations, and Fire and Life Safety educator, and he instructs others as a Minnesota Board of Firefighter Training and Education qualified instructor.

“He is one of those people who is involved in everything,” Dakota Electric’s CEO Greg Miller said at the ceremony. “You can see why this individual is certainly an excellent choice for this award.”

Allbee was appreciative of the recognition and thanked his family, the rest of the department and Dakota Electric for the award. Along with the award for Allbee, Dakota Electric provided a $5,000 check to the Farmington Fire Department to purchase a chemical monitoring system that can detect airborne hazardous chemicals while fighting fires. Burning plastic and other materials can put off dangerous gases, such as cyanide, that pose a critical risk to firefighters.

Dakota Electric CEO Greg Miller, Fire Chief Jim Larsen, Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Allbee, Mayor Todd Larson and Dakota Electric Board Chair Jim Sheldon.

“The money will be used to purchase combustible 5-gas meters,” Chief Larsen said. “This will be a significant upgrade that will save firefighter lives.”

“Dakota Electric is happy to be able to provide a contribution to the department for this equipment,” Board Chair Jim Sheldon said, “and it is clear that Jeffrey Allbee was an excellent choice for this first Spirit of Excellence award.”