Colorado Mountain College Leadville’s Fire Academy cadets train at the Dotsero Training Facility in Gypsum to gain live structure fire experience. Leadville/Lake County Fire-Rescue  Operations Chief Sean Simon is now taking a lead instructor role at the college’s academy.

In January, Colorado Mountain College and the City of Leadville signed an intergovernmental agreement that will allow for an expansion of CMC’s Fire Academy I, further strengthening the relationship between Colorado Mountain College (CMC) and Leadville/Lake County Fire-Rescue (LCCFR).

While Dan Dailey, Leadville/Lake County Fire-Rescue (LCCFR) fire chief, and Sean Simon, operations chief, have been adjunct faculty in the college’s Fire Academy I for years, the agreement allows Simon to take a larger role at the college.

As a LLCFR city employee, Simon will now directly assist the college with program coordination and curriculum development for the campus’ fire academy, a semester-long course that certifies students with the basic skills necessary for firefighting careers. The program draws fire academy cadets from the CMC campus, Lake County and neighboring communities.

“We are partnering to enhance the learning opportunities that we offer in fire and emergency services education by engaging Operations Chief Simon to be the lead instructor for our fire academy and to help shape the future of this type of training at CMC Leadville,” said Rachel Pokrandt, CMC vice president and dean of the college’s Leadville and Salida campuses.

Under the agreement, Simon will work directly with college staff to schedule and plan Fire Academy I. He will recruit retired and current firefighters to become academy instructors, coordinate student interns and procure college and fire rescue equipment and locations for on- and off-campus training.

“This partnership allows us to efficiently and effectively use taxpayer dollars, and to enhance educational experiences and emergency services,” said Pokrandt.

“I’m excited for the opportunity to build on our longstanding relationship with CMC and to improve our emergency service training options in Lake County,” said Simon.

For more information about the CMC Leadville Fire Academy, visit

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