Fire-pi, Inc., receives 2021 HIRE Vets Medallion GoldAward from the U.S. Dept. of Labor

U.S. Secretary of Labor Martin J. Walsh recognized Minneapolis-based FirePi, Inc., founded by Lorne L. Brunner, USN (Ret.) EWC (sw/aw), as a recipient of the 2021 HIRE Vets Medallion Award during a virtual award ceremony presented by U.S. Department of Labor. The Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing American Military Veterans Act (HIRE Vets Act) Medallion Program is the only federal award program that recognizes employers who successfully recruit, hire, and retain veterans.

“As a VA-certified Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business and retired U.S. Navy veteran, I am committed to hiring qualified veterans for my business,” said Fire-pi Owner Lorne L. Brunner, MSForensics, CFI. “I value and prioritize the special skills qualified veterans bring to forensic fire and explosion investigative work, including their leadership strengths, resilience, discipline, tenacity and ability to develop thorough investigative protocols.”

Fire-pi, Inc., joins other HIRE Vets Medallion awardees, who have shown a commitment to hiring veterans, ensuring veterans a long-term career and growth plan that uses the diverse skills acquired through their military service. Recipients of the 2021 HIRE Vets Medallion Award meet rigorous employment and veteran integration assistance criteria, including veteran hiring and retention percentages; availability of veteran-specific resources;

leadership programming for veterans; dedicated human resource efforts; pay compensation and tuition assistance programs for veterans. More than 1,400 employers have earned a HIRE Vets Medallion Award since 2018.

Fire-pi, Inc., is the Midwest’s only forensically educated, veteran-owned and staffed origin and cause, fire and explosion firm, and the Midwest’s only VA-certified Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business qualified to investigate fire and explosion origin and cause investigations. Brunner, a retired U.S. Navy veteran, served six deployments spanning 13 years of his 20-year Navy career, much of it during the Gulf War, achieving the rank of Chief Petty Officer. He has investigated more than 2,000 fires and led investigative teams locally, nationally and internationally. He holds a master’s degree in forensics, is a Certified Fire Investigator, licensed as a private investigator and is certified as an expert witness. Fire-pi, Inc. is staffed by Brunner, and Jake Rylander, a U.S. Air Force veteran. Fire-pi, Inc. seeks to build its staff through future veteran hires, based on a model developed by Brunner that provides fire and explosion investigation training, formal education and an internship to qualify an apprentice as a fire and explosion investigator.

The HIRE Vets Medallion Award is earned by businesses that demonstrate unparalleled commitment to attracting, hiring and retaining veterans. The 2022 HIRE Vets Medallion Award application period will open to employers on Jan. 31, 2022. For more information about the program and the application process, visit