RSVP for Newsmakers Breakfast with Cornelius Fire Chief

Chief Barbee: Leading a 24-hour operation

June 13. The Newsmakers Breakfast June 14 at The Peninsula Club will center on the man leading the transition from a volunteer fire department to a full-time paid operation.

Cornelius Fire Chief Guerry Barbee was 15 when he joined the fire department as a junior fireman in 1994; now he’s leading a complex, multi-year transition.

In previous years, the Cornelius-Lemley Fire and Rescue operated with an entirely volunteer and part-time staff. While the service provided by volunteer and part-time firefighters was exceptional, short-staffing meant that minimum standards set by the National Fire Protection Association were not met.

His father, Jim Barbee, was a long-time volunteer fireman in Cornelius as well as fire chief. His grandfather Hal Sharp was a volunteer fireman here as well.

There are two stations in town, with the need for a third, and Cornelius has leapt from a population of 20,000 to more than 30,000 seemingly overnight.

Barbee has stories to tell, as well as facts to share.

Open forum Q&A

The Newsmakers Breakfast is an open-forum Q&A with local people who make the news. Anyone in the audience can ask a question.

The cost to attend is $16, which includes a full country breakfast at The Peninsula Club.

Doors open at 7:15 a.m. for networking. The buffet-style breakfast gets under way at 7:30 a.m.

The Q&A begins at 8 a.m. and concludes promptly at 9.

RSVP: 704-895-1335

You must reserve a seat by calling 704-895-1335 with Visa or MasterCard.


The Presenting Sponsor is Lake Norman Group/Francomano, Stimson & Associates.

Breakfast Sponsors are Christina Stone Homes and Raymer Kepner Funeral Home.

Coffee Sponsors are Davidson Wealth Management, Master Title and The McIntosh Law Firm.


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