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Speaker Biography

Vijith Randeniya OBE

Vijith Randeniya graduated with a degree in Modern History in 1981 and joined the London Fire Brigade two years later. He spent 15 years in the London Fire Brigade, serving at some of the UK’s busiest fire stations including Brixton and Whitechapel before moving to Nottinghamshire Fire and
Rescue as Head of Operations. In 2000 he transferred to the West Midlands Fire Service as Assistant Chief Officer and in December 2003 he was promoted to Deputy Chief Fire Officer. Vijith made Acting Chief Fire Officer
in November 2008 and was appointed as Chief Fire Officer by the West Midlands Fire Authority in March 2009.

During his time the West Midlands Fire Service has become one of the best
performing in the United Kingdom. Vijith cares passionately about operational
excellence and fire fighter safety; he has taken command of several large incidents including the Shannon Mill fire, the largest in the brigade’s post war history. He also believes the Fire Service has a key role to play in making society safer and more prosperous.

He has a Masters Degree in Management and is a member of the Institute of Fire Engineers and was awarded an OBE in the Queens Birthday Honours list in 2006. In July 2009, Vijith was awarded the Public Service Excellence Award at the Lloyds TSB Jewel Awards, which applauds the vast contribution made by those individuals working within the public sector. He also won the prestigious Hammer Award at the GG2 Leadership and Diversity Awards in London in September 2009, which highlight and showcase ethnic achievement. Vijith became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in January 2010, and was awarded a honourary doctorate by Aston University in July 2010. Vijith was elected to the Board of Governors of Birmingham Metropolitan College in July 2010 and became Chairman of the Board
from September of the same year. He is a member of the West Midlands Princes Trust Regional Council and was elected to the CFOA Presidential Team in August 2010, and will serve as President from September


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