A local firefighter with nearly 20 years of service was recently elected as the vice president for the FDNY’s largest union.
FDNY firefighter and Bronx resident Robert ‘Bobby’ Eustace won his race for vice president of the FDNY-Uniformed Firefighters Association last month.
Originally born in Orange County, NY, Eustace attended Goshen Central High School before beginning his FDNY career as an EMT for two years. His father attended Cardinal Hayes High School.
He became a firefighter in April 2001, five months before the tragedy of 9/11.
Prior to his appointment as FDNY-UFA’s vice president, Eustace worked at FDNY Ladder Company 27 for 17 years and has been a Woodlawn resident for over 20 years.
The firefighter’s roots can be traced back to his grandmother’s two brothers, who were NYC firefighters.
When Eustace’s grandmother came to Ellis Island from Ireland in the 1920s, she had lost her sponsorship. Her two brothers, who had already immigrated to the United States, traveled to Ellis Island to pick her up.
Eustace, who defeated FDNY-UFA Staten Island trustee Eric Bischoff with 3146 votes to Bischoff’s 2146 votes, will assume the role that was previously held by former FDNY-UFA vice president LeRoy McGinnis.
The FDNY-UFA is NYC’s largest firefighter union and represents 20,000 active duty and retired firefighters.
“I have worked alongside Bobby during his tenure as recording secretary of the Uniformed Firefighters Association and I know him to be nothing other than a tireless advocate for his fellow firefighters,” said Gerard Fitzgerald, president of the FDNY-UFA.
“He is a great fit for this position and he is poised for success in this new role, where his experience, knowledge and passion will be an asset to advocating on behalf of our membership,” Fitzgerald added.
“I am honored to have been elected by the membership of the FDNY-UFA to serve as this organization’s vice president,” Eustace said. “This union has been a champion for firefighters in NYC and I intend to do my part to further this legacy by fighting for every member - active duty and retired - and advocating on their behalf with the department and government decision makers who shape our profession.”
Eustace said that his goals as FDNY-UFA’s new vice president include advocating for improving FDNY benefits, health, pensions and safety as well as the legislative to protect NYC’s committed firefighters.
“There will be no greater champion for NYC firefighters than I, and I can’t wait to get to work with President (Gerard) Fitzgerald and all those who help make this union one of the city’s strongest and most influential,” Eustace added. “These firefighters protect New Yorkers - and I will protect them.”