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About Us

Professional Firefighters of Eastern Missouri is an organized labor nonprofit in the St. Louis area that represents firefighters, paramedics, and dispatchers. Our mission is to protect the rights of our members and ensure their safety and well-being while on the job. We work tirelessly to improve working conditions, negotiate fair contracts, and provide training and education to our members. We are committed to serving our community and keeping them safe from fires, medical emergencies, and other disasters.

Our Members

We are the sole representative for the Missouri counties of St. Louis, Jefferson, Franklin, St. Charles, St. Genevieve, Lincoln, Warren, and Crawford. With over 2500 members and still growing, Local 2665 is the largest Local in the IAFF 2nd District, which includes the states of Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, and Nebraska.

Our Union Hall

The PFEM Hall and Banquet Center holds the Local 2665 offices, a main hall that can accommodate 275 guests, a secondary hall for 80 guests, and Vinny’s Bar & Grill. Our property is open to the public and also features an outdoor sand volleyball complex, Bocce Club, outdoor tavern, tiki bar, and an impressive all-abilities playground.

Kennedy's playground was developed in 2020 and is dedicated to our members' children. It includes considerate play elements, including:

  • Spongy surfacing

  • Ramps from top to bottom

  • Transfer stations throughout

  • Specialized seating and handholds

  • Slanted/graduated climbing elements

  • High back swings

  • Stainless steel and molded slides

  • Musical elements (Kennedy’s Favorite)

  • Parallel play

  • Fun, educational play panels

  • Teeter-Totter

  • Sliding pole

  • Seated Zipline Track

Our Community Outreach Fund

Firefighter delivering winter coats to children

Professional Firefighters of Eastern Missouri Community Outreach is our 501(c)3 nonprofit division that provides support to our members and neighbors in order to build safer and healthier communities in our region.


We develop capital projects like all-abilities playgrounds, host community events, provide family assistance and educational opportunities through our organization and across our member Shops. The PFEM Community Outreach also serves as a resource for the development of similar organizations within our member Shops' geographical areas for groups that want to more significantly benefit their local neighborhoods.

This division also supports our 70-year relationship with the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Our members collect donations annually through the 'Fill the Boot' drive and collect well over $100,000 for this deserving cause. 

Our History

The International Association of Fire Fighters was originally chartered on February 29, 1918. St. Louis County Fire Fighters wishing to become union joined the International, in 1934, becoming Local 398, I.A.F.F., AFL-CIO, CLC. At one time or another, they represented someone from every county fire department, even including the old Jefferson Barracks Fire Department.

In the early 70’s Local 398 was the largest local in St. Louis County.


In 1978, Local 398 chose to drop out of the International Association of Fire Fighters thus causing a split amongst the membership. Members from Jennings, Moline, and University City voted to continue affiliation with the I.A.F.F., so in October of 1978 Local 2665 was chartered as the “Professional Fire Fighters of St. Louis County”. Shortly thereafter Creve Coeur and Hazelwood joined 2665. Within a year’s time Community, Shrewsbury, and Wellston joined the five aforementioned shops. By 1988 Local 2665 represented 11 fire districts and 10 municipal fire departments, with a membership of approximately 500 fire fighters and paramedics. Through the leadership and support of its’ members, Local 2665 had some of the largest growth in membership in the country and continued to grow as a result of working with fire districts and municipal fire departments in a fair and honest manner.

The structure of the local consisted of President (Dennis Murray), Secretary/Treasurer (Dave Tilley), Executive Vice President (Vince Schramm), 2 Vice Presidents, Sergeant-at-Arms and a shop steward from each department. There was also a representative on the St. Louis County Fire Academy board. The local maintained membership and affiliation with the Missouri AFL-CIO, St. Louis Labor Council, Missouri State Council of Fire Fighters, and the Metro Council of Fire Fighters.

By 1998 Local 2665 represented 18 fire districts, 15 municipal fire departments, 3 ambulance districts and, 2 dispatching agencies, with a membership of approximately 850 fire fighters, paramedics, dispatchers and support personnel. Local 2665 continued to be the fastest growing local union in the United States and Canada. In the early 90’s Local 2665 began organizing ambulance district and dispatching agencies in the area. The Locals’ jurisdiction at that time encompassed St. Louis, Jefferson, and Franklin counties, and was the exclusive bargaining agent for these areas.


The structure of the Local’s leadership had to change due to its rapid growth. Local 2665 was sub-divided into 5 separate districts, with Vice Presidents elected from each district. Staff Representatives were appointed to assist all counties of the local. In March 2002 the St. Charles County union Local 3410 merged with Local 2665 creating a 6th district.

In June 2003 the Local broke away from the Missouri State Council of Fire Fighters and started our own legislative branch. Local 2665 contracted with the top lobbyist firm in the state and committed Legislative Director Mark Woolbright full-time to lobby for bills in Jefferson City that affect not only our members, but also first responders state wide.

In October 2003 IAFF General President Harold Schaitberger helped the local celebrate its 25th anniversary. By 2004 Local 2665 represented 31 fire districts and 16 municipal fire departments, 13 ambulances districts and 4 dispatching centers with a membership of approximately 1750 fire fighters, paramedics, dispatchers and support personnel.

After the tremendous success experienced by having a dedicated Legislative Director in Jefferson City, Local 2665 was approached by the Missouri State Council about re-affiliation. Local 2665 voted to re-affiliate in October of 2005 only after the State Council agreed to have a full-time Legislative Director added to the Executive Board. Mark Woolbright was unanimously voted in to fill that role, where he has served ever since.

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