The Tennessee Valley Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (TVSFPE) received its charter as the 29th chapter of the Society of Fire Protection engineers on May 23, 1977. It is noted that a considerable amount of time and effort was expended to establish the chapter and to perform the necessary preliminary work to be granted a charter.
The group of fire protection professionals who founded the TVSFPE conducted official business in a manner consistent with being a "chapter" prior to obtaining official chapter status.
The founders of the TVSFPE used the constitution and by-laws of various existing chapters including the Southeastern Chapter as a guide to create their own first version of these documents.
The first official meeting for the 1976-1977 business year for the TVSFPE was held on November 10, 1976 at the Knoxville Howard Johnson motor lodge on Kingston Pike.
The founding members of the "chapter" opened a permanent checking account at First American Bank of Knoxville in December of 1976.
The chapter officers for the first official year (1977) were as follows:
President: John McCormick
Vice President: Bob O'Laughlin
Secretary: J. T. Blackmon and Ken Leifhiet
Treasurer: Glenn Hoynoski
Board of Directors: Included some of the officers and Ken Dungan, Bill Joy, and David Icove.
The TVSFPE was an important member and participant in the WATTec technical conference held annually in Knoxville Tennessee. A letter dated August 4, 1977 is in the files from chapter president John McCormick requesting TVSFPE membership in WATTec. Many notable and nationally recognized speakers and moderators participated in making the TVSFPE WATTec sessions successful. It is noted that over the years, several SFPE Presidents were able to attend and participate in the WATTec sessions and associated Chapter meetings.
The TVSFPE worked to include fire protection professional from the Nashville and Chattanooga area in the activities of the chapter. In 1980, provisional officers for the Chattanooga Branch of the TVSFPE were elected.
During the 1980's the TVSFPE was an active participant in the Engineers week activities including presenting award winning Mall Exhibits for several years.
The TVSFPE has earned the Bronze Chapter of Excellence Award two times in 2005 and in 2007. The TVSFPE was awarded the Silver Chapter of Excellence Award in 2006.
Since 2008, the TVSFPE has been awarded the Gold Chapter of Excellence.
Throughout TVSFPE's existence, the chapter has presented numerous technical seminars of various fire protection topics.
The members of the TVSFPE contribute to the mission of the SFPE and the NFPA with several members serving on technical committees and tasks forces.
Current and past members of the TVSFPE have held notable positions in the SFPE including serving as President, serving on the Executive and Qualifications boards. Members of the TVSFPE have written various technical documents for the SFPE. In Addition, the Chapter has three Fellow Members of the TVSFPE and one Life Member of the TVSFPE.
Jimmy Landmesser, Jr.