Chief (and later Fire Commissioner) Augustus Beekman
The men who enter the New York City Fire Department are recruited from a base population of ten million people to a protective service that has been identified as the most sought after job title in the civil service, one that attracts men from other municipal agencies, as well as from private industry. The department justifiably assumes that the capability potential of firefighters is well above average.
Similarly, the men who are promoted to the officer ranks are distilled from the base roster of eleven thousand firemen. The department credits them with being capable of accepting any challenge which these ranks present.
However, society has learned through the experience of centuries that human nature resists performing up to maximum potential without the influence of motivating or compelling forces. In the Fire Department such forces are expressed in the form of recruitment and promotion standards, the administration of competitive examinations, and the recording of comparative performance ratings.
Utilization of these procedures has enabled the City of New York to develop and maintain a professional fire protection force o9f outstanding quality, one that services a metropolitan area whose population, as well as construction and occupancy complexities, are more than double those of any other city in the United States.
As an additional by-product, the dedication and search for excellence necessary for entrance into, and advancement within the department has motivated men to broader self-development in a wide range of academic and professional fields.
The conclusion can therefore be drawn that any pressures applied by the Fire Department are designed to propel men forward rather than to hold them back.
Division of Fire Control
WNYF, Vol 1, 1974