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Paul LePore

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Visit the Long Beach Fire Department (California) website.

Paul Lepore is a Battalion Chief with the City of Long Beach, CA. He entered the fire service as a civilian paramedic for the LA City Fire Dept. in 1985. After completing his education at the Los Angeles Paramedic Training Institute, Lepore worked in the high impact area of South Central, Los Angeles. Lepore was hired by Long Beach Fire Dept. in 1986. He spent two years as a Fire Captain and is currently a Battalion Chief. He has conducted hundreds of entry-level interviews, as well as served as a rater for Fire Captain and Battalion Chief promotional exams. He holds instructor credentials for EMT, Hazardous Materials, and Weapons of Mass Destruction. Leopre has conducted numerous seminars to coach and mentor both promotional and entry-level candidates alike. Lepore is the author of The Aspiring Firefighter's Two-Year Plan and Smoke Your Firefighter Interview, which help candidates achieve their goal of becoming a firefighter. He founded EMS Safety Services, Inc., a First Aid and CPR training corporation that certifies over 100,000 students and instructors annually. Paul Lepore and his wife Marian have two daughters, Ashley and Samantha. They live in Dana Point, California.  Battalion Chief Paul Lepore is the author of Smoke Your Firefighter Written Exam; Smoke Your Firefighter Interview; and, The Aspiring Firefighter's 2 Year Plan.

According to the book description of Smoke Your Firefighter Written Exam, “goes beyond providing sample questions and answers. It teaches the reader the basic rules and principles behind the questions; in other words, how to solve each complex problem. Each section begins with an overview of how to solve the problems. The reasoning behind the correct answer is presented in clear, easy-to-understand language.”

According to the book description of Smoke Your Firefighter Interview, “This edition of Smoke Your Firefighter Interview book has additional questions and expanded answers. The oral interview is the most important part of the hiring process. Since it is often weighted 100% of the candidate s final score, earning a high score on the interview is essential to getting hired. Fire department oral interviews are unique, which is why most people struggle with them. Successful candidates understand exactly what the raters are looking for in an entry-level candidate. Those who don t may struggle for years, eventually giving up on their dreams. Chief Lepore has proctored hundreds of entry-level interviews. He was amazed at how unprepared most candidate were. He could see that many had the will and desire, but it was very apparent that the vast majority of candidates were ill-prepared for the oral interview. His objective is to show the candidate the interview through the eyes of the raters. The more a candidate understands what the oral board is looking for, the more he or she will be able to present as the candidate they have been waiting for. Smoke Your Firefighter Interview is packed with 330 pages of invaluable information. Chief Lepore covers 85 of the most commonly asked fire department interview questions. The format is simple: question, answer, and reasoning behind the answer. After answering each question, Chief Lepore carefully and thoroughly explains why he has answered the question the way he did. These reasons often delve into the culture of the fire department and the expectations of a rookie firefighter. In short, anyone can memorize questions and answers. Smoke Your Firefighter Interview explains why the answers are correct. In addition to the questions and answers, Chief Lepore explains the rationale for WHY he answers the question the way he does. He includes many follow-up questions as well as explaining the pit falls for many of the questions. Once a candidate understands the interview process and learns how to present his or her answers, it is not uncommon to get multiple job offers. Instead of struggling to land a job, many candidates are blessed with the ability to select from several departments. Getting hired on the fire department is all about learning to take a fire department interview. Those who learn will be successful, while those who don t will always struggle. A candidate may be exactly what a fire department is looking for, but if he or she cannot interview favorably, he or she will never get hired. In addition to 85 questions, answers and rationale for the right answers, Smoke Your Firefighter Interview also includes chapters on: Rules of thumb for handling situational questions What to expect from your first day as a firefighter Sample interview rating sheets Description of the job of a firefighter Monthly probationary evaluations.”

One reader of Smoke Your Firefighter Interview said, “I give this book a perfect score because of the results it produced. I purchased this book one month before my FIRST interview with the Oakland Fire Department. Six weeks later I was sitting across the table with the Fire Chief. This book can and will prepare any and every candidate for there oral board. Moreover, this book does not give "canned" responses to interview questions, it gives you a framework to think and reason in. This new paradigm will allow you to produce your own answers to score highly on any fire related oral board. Chief Lepore and all his books are assets to all of us hoping to become part of the fire family.”


Smoke Your Firefighter Interview
Paul S. Lepore  More Info

The Aspiring Firefighter's 2 Year Plan
Paul S. Lepore  More Info

Smoke Your Firefighter Written Exam
Paul S. Lepore  More Info

According to the book description of The Aspiring Firefighter's 2 Year Plan, “This book applies to any type of candidate: high school students who are considering the fire service, older candidates who are contemplating a change in career, or current candidates who want to streamline the process or are having difficulty getting hired. Getting hired on the fire department can be a daunting task. It takes planning, passion and focus to achieve the goal. Without a clear path to follow, many candidates waste valuable time or proceed in a direction that is unproductive. The Aspiring Firefighter's Two-Year Plan clearly identifies the path a successful candidate will take to reach his or her goal of becoming a firefighter. A strategic plan will help you organize your thoughts, evaluate your resources, and clarify your destination. It will also help you decide if the fire department is really the right job for you before you pour thousands of dollars and years of effort towards a tenuous dream. Once you decide that their is no other job for you, then you can pursue your goal with passion, focus, and urgency. Your commitment will show in everything you do, and every test or interview you take. Battalion Chief Paul Lepore clearly outlines a plan to follow in this comprehensive 275-page book. He identifies the importance of education, how to create a fire department resume (complete with multiple examples), what it takes to complete a basic fire academy, the proper conduct on a ride-along, and what it takes to succeed in the fire station. The author's wife goes into great detail describing the humorous side of being married to a firefighter as well as the benefits to the family. The book answers questions on background, medical, and psychological exams. In addition, the author examines age, tattoos, mechanical ability, public speaking, and community service. Lastly, the book covers what to expect on your first day, what is expected from a rookie firefighter, what to expect from the fire academy.”

About the Long Beach Fire Department

The Long Beach Fire Department “is divided into five bureaus which report to the Fire Chief. Each bureau is further broken down into divisions. Each bureau has specific responsibilities and are independently managed. The Operations Bureau, Fire Prevention Bureau, and the Support Services Bureau are managed by deputy chiefs while the Administration Bureau and the Disaster Management Bureau are managed by civilian employees.

The Operations Bureau is responsible for all field operations including Fire Suppression, the Lifeguard Division, and fire/non-fire response activities”.  The Operations Bureau also contains the Marine Safety Division which “is responsible for the operation and management of the Marine Safety/Lifeguard Division and the safe and lawful use of the 9 miles of beaches, 5,300 acres of oceanfront property, waterways and marinas of the City of Long Beach. Additionally, the Marine Safety Division is responsible for the public safety of the 4,000 pleasure craft moored in the City's marinas and responding to water emergencies in the City's rivers and lakes.”

The Fire Prevention Bureau of the Long Beach Fire Department “is responsible to prevent fires from starting, to provide safety education in case of fire, to investigate and identify suspicious fires and environmental crimes through proactive enforcement of Fire, Life Safety, and Environmental Code requirements in the City of Long Beach. The Bureau is responsible for Fire Code Enforcement, Plan Check, Fire Investigation, Arson Prosecution, Environmental Investigations and Records Management. It over sees community services divisions, including Public Information.”

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