FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, June 03, 2019


TRENTON, NJ -- The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ (DCA) Division of Fire Safety and the New Jersey Fire Prevention and Protection Association (NJFPPA) today announced the winners of the 2019 NJFPPA-NJDFS Scholastic Fire Safety Poster Contest. The contest is among the longest running community risk reduction-public education programs in the state.

As children return to school each year, the NJFPPA asks K-12 and Special Education students to give their artistic interpretation of the theme advanced each year by the National Fire Protection Association. This year, student artists from school districts in each of the 21 counties, with instructor guidance, submitted entries supporting the theme, ‘Look, Listen, Learn - Be Aware, Fire Can Happen Anywhere.’

The artwork of the overall winner will grace the cover of the yearly NJDFS and NJFPPA Fire Safety calendar, which promotes fire prevention awareness. The calendar is distributed statewide to advance community risk reduction awareness. Winning posters from each division and runners-up are also placed throughout the calendar.

“The annual contest is one of our many educational fire-prevention efforts in the community and allows us to partner with the NJFPPA, parents and guardians, and the schools that sponsor the competition,” said Lieutenant Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, Commissioner of DCA.  “I would like to recognize and congratulate this year’s winner, Kylie McLaughlin from Somerville High School, and commend all of the students that participated.”

In addition to the winning artwork, the calendar includes reminders such as the annual time change to check and replace smoke alarm batteries, the dates for significant fire safety events such as National Fire Prevention Week, and seasonal cautions concerning fire safety throughout the year. 

“Congratulations to all our division winners and to those who participated in the annual contest,” said State Fire Marshal and Division of Fire Safety Director Richard Mikutsky. “I would especially like to thank the New Jersey Fire Prevention and Protection Association, which continues to support this effort year after year.”

The 2019 contest winners are as follows:

Division 1 (Grade K-2) – Michael McCabe, All Saints Catholic Academy, Bayonne, Hudson County

Division 2 (Grade 2-5) – Maleah Williams, Conerly Road School, Somerset, Somerset County

Division 3 (Grade 6-8) – Angie Maricino, Central Regional Middle School, Bayville, Ocean County

Division 4 (Grade 9-12) & Overall Winner – Kylie McLaughlin, Somerville High School, Somerville, Somerset County

Division 5 (Vocational) – Hannah Reis, Burlington County Institute of Technology, Westhampton, Burlington County

Division 6 (Special Education, Grade K-8) – Jair Garcia, North Main Street School, Pleasantville, Atlantic County

Division 7 (Special Education, Grade 9-12) Rodney Joseph, Irvington High School, Irvington, Essex County 

The Scholastic Fire Safety Poster Contest grew out of the New Jersey Fire Safety Commission, which has worked by legislative mandate to reduce the instance of civilian and firefighter fatalities statewide since 1983. Part of this mandate includes participation by schoolchildren, resulting in the development of the poster contest. 

The Division of Fire Safety serves as the central fire service agency in the State. The Division is responsible for the development and enforcement of the State Uniform Fire Code, as well as for implementing community risk reduction strategies and firefighter training programs.                      

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Tammori Petty
Gina Trish
Lisa Ryan
(609) 292-6055