Our Team

Peter Van Dorpe

Professional Experience

Peter has over 39 years of fire service experience and recently retired as the Fire Chief of the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District (ALFPD). In 2013 Peter retired as the Director of the Chicago Fire Department’s (CFD) Training Division after a 33-year career with the CFD. In addition to his work as a Field Instructor for the Illinois Fire Service Institute, Peter has been a lead instructor for the CFD’s Fire Officer School and has taught building construction for the fire service through the City Colleges of Chicago.

Peter is a recognized expert on modern fire ground challenges and has made multiple presentations on this topic at the National Fire Academy, Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC), Firehouse Expo, and Fire Rescue International. In 2012 Peter delivered the General Session Keynote at FDIC and addressed the U.S. Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the “Flammability Standards and Flame Retardant Chemicals.”

Peter has participated as a Subject Matter Expert (SME) for Underwriters Laboratories’ research on Firefighter Safety, the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) “Evaluating Firefighting Tactics Under Wind Driven Conditions”, the International Association of Fire Fighters “Firefighter Safety and Deployment Study” in high rise buildings, and several National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Line of Duty Death investigations.

Following his retirement from the ALFPD, Peter continues to engage both the fire service and private sector as a trainer, program developer, and safety consultant, primarily through his membership in Polaris Public Safety Solutions LLC. Recent projects include reviewing Line of Duty Death (LODD) reports for NIOSH, developing the fire attack and overhaul methodology for AutoStore installations, participating as a SME for the redevelopment of the State of Illinois’ Fire Chief Officer Certification program, instructing for the Illinois Fire Service Institute’s Leadership Development and Decision-Making program, and lecturing on modern fire ground strategy and tactics throughout the country.

Education and Training

Peter earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Fire Science Management from Southern Illinois University.

Professional Organizations

Peter is an emeritus member of the Advisory Board for Underwriters Laboratories’ Fire Safety Research Institute (UL-FSRI) and serves on the Board of Directors of the International Society of Fire Service Instructors (ISFSI).


Peter is the 2016 recipient of the Fire Engineering/ISFSI George D. Post Instructor of the Year award.