Northfield Public Safety Explorer Post 3300 is Making a Difference

Chris Matek (far L) and Brian Kramer (far R) receive the Making A Difference award from Northfield Police Chief Monte Nelson, Lonsdale Fire Department Captain Scott Sticha and Brian Edwards of Northfield Hospital & Clinics EMS.
Chris Matek (far L) and Brian Kramer (far R) receive the Making A Difference award from Northfield Police Chief Monte Nelson, Lonsdale Fire Department Captain Scott Sticha and Brian Edwards of Northfield Hospital & Clinics EMS.

Northfield Healthy Community Initiative (HCI) recently recognized Chris Matek and Brian Kramer, advisors of Northfield Public Safety Explorer Post 3300, with the January 2017 “Making a Difference” Award.

The award is given out to community members or organizations that help to make Northfield an even better place for young people.

The Northfield Public Safety Explorer Post is dedicated to providing youth (ages 14 to 20) with training and information about the public safety career fields of Emergency Medical Service (EMS), Law Enforcement and Fire Fighting. This post is the first in the state to combine all three emergency service disciplines into one program.

There are 125 Explorer Posts in Minnesota. The program focuses on career exploration, providing hands-on experience to youth in their career of interest.

Hannah Breiland, Northfield High School junior, has been a member of Post 3300 for the past year and is currently an officer with the group. “The commitment that Chris Matek and Brian Kramer put into this post is phenomenal,” she said. She especially appreciates the time and the energy they have put into this effort as volunteer advisors. “Through them, I’ve learned the true meaning of teamwork. Teamwork is not just being there to complete a task, but also being there for each other as a family.”

Andrew Gaub, current Commander of the Explorer Post and NHS senior, agrees that Matek and Kramer have been instrumental to his experience over the past year. “They coach members on how to be leaders and positive role models, and how to work as a team,” Gaub said. “By participating in the Northfield Public Safety Explorer Post, it has confirmed for me that I am on the right career path.”

“My experiences with the Explorer Post have helped shape my decisions (about my future career),” said Breiland. “When I first began, I wanted to be a sheriff, but now I want to complete my EMT and become a volunteer firefighter as well…  I have a lot more respect for what the people in public safety do.”

The Northfield Healthy Community Initiative and the Northfield News present the Making a Difference Award cooperatively. If you know an individual or group that you would like to nominate for this award, visit for nomination guidelines and the easy-to-complete application, or find HCI on Facebook. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and are selected by a review team of HCI board members and local youth.

Cheryl Strike, Northfield Healthy Community Initiative

Northfield Explorer Austin Rhodes featured in the channel 5 news

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 9.54.29 AMOn April 23, the St. Paul Fire Department hosted an event for young adults interested in becoming a firefighter. The department called the event the Fire Explorer “X Games.” Participants were able to partake in fight simulated fires. Northfield Explorer Austin Rhodes was featured in a video on the channel 5 news!

Northfield launches Minnesota’s first Public Safety Explorer Post

Youth ages 14 to 20 get hands-on experience with Police, Fire and Emergency Medical Services Northfield’s three public safety divisions are teaming up to launch a combination Explorer Post for youth – the first of its kind in Minnesota, and possibly the first in the U.S.

Northfield Police, Northfield Fire and the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) unit of Northfield Hospital & Clinics will give youth ages 14-20 the chance to explore public-safety careers while volunteering in the community.

“Explorers get exposed to three intertwined, public safety jobs – three very different career paths they might be interested in down the road,” said Monte Nelson, Northfield Chief of Police.

“Explorer Post” is a national program of the Boy Scouts of America. Northfield organizers are working with BSA’s Northern Star Council, based in St. Paul. There are 125 Explorer Posts in Minnesota.

Northfield’s Explorer Post has slots for 20 participants – girls and boys. Participants must have completed 8th grade. Youth can request program information by contacting Christopher Matek (EMS) at (507) 646-1476 or [email protected], or Sandy Malecha (Northfield Healthy Community Initiative) at [email protected]