The Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE) was established in 1950 by a group of engineers who recognized the need for a professional organization dedicated to advancing the field of fire protection engineering. The Society was created to promote the science and practice of fire protection engineering and to provide a forum for engineers and other professionals interested in this field to exchange ideas and knowledge.
In its early years, SFPE was primarily focused on developing educational materials and training programs to support the growing field of fire protection engineering. Over time, the organization expanded its scope to include research, advocacy, and outreach activities to improve fire safety and protection worldwide.
In 1971, SFPE was incorporated as a not-for-profit membership organization. It has since become the leading professional society representing those practicing fire protection and fire safety engineering. Today, SFPE has over 5,000 members and more than 120 chapters worldwide, including more than 20 student chapters.
In 1989, a year before becoming President of the Society, David Lucht, PE, wrote an article in the Journal of Fire Protection Engineering titled "Coming of Age," which captured the history and development of fire protection engineering from the late 1800s to late 1980s as well as the origins of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers and its role in defining the discipline.
Through its various initiatives, including developing engineering standards and guidelines, research, technical seminars, conferences, webinars, publications, and outreach and advocacy efforts, SFPE continues to play a critical role in advancing the science and practice of fire protection engineering and promoting public safety and protection.