Peer Support

Become a Peer Supporter

Provide confidential support to your brothers and sisters experiencing personal, emotional or work-related problems. We’re recruiting:

  • Chief/command staff peers
  • Active/retired peers
  • Full-time/POC/volunteer peers
  • Spouse/family peers

Join us for an upcoming Peer Support training! Email us to learn more.

We’ve been there, and we’re here for you.

Firefighters are exposed to traumatic stress at particularly high rates, and getting help from someone who has experienced the same struggles can make all the difference. MnFIRE peer supporters are here to provide confidential support to those experiencing personal, emotional or work-related problems, while acting as a bridge to outside professional services.

Through the MnFIRE Assistance Program, firefighters are matched with a trained peer supporter who knows firsthand the difficulties firefighters face and are well-equipped to walk alongside a firefighter in need as they navigate their situation. By providing emotional support outside of the traditional medical system, peer support directly reduces the culture of silence in the fire service that has all too often resulted in worsening mental health and suicide.

Without the help of MnFIRE I believe I would not be here today. Words can never express the gratitude I have for helping me regain my life and understand I am okay and will only get better.

MnFIRE Peer Support Recipient

Need Help?

If you’re in crisis or need help, please call our 24-hour hotline: 888-784-6634

This confidential, free service is available for all active volunteer, paid-on-call, part-time and full-time Minnesota firefighters. Phone lines are answered 24/7 and provide confidential support, guidance and mental health resources.

MnFIRE Peer Support Team

Margaret Gavian, PhD, Medical Director

Dr. Gavian is a licensed Psychologist in the state of Minnesota and received her PhD in Psychology from the University of Minnesota. She has led the MnFIRE Peer Support Program for five years, training fire departments throughout the state about staying mentally healthy on the job and responding to departments and firefighters in crisis. She maintains a private practice, primarily serving MN firefighters and other first responders. She trains and consults for various public safety organizations throughout the state on mental health, resilience and stress management through Blue Peak Consulting. Dr. Gavian completed her training at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Minneapolis and focused on delivering evidence-based care. She is the daughter of a military veteran, has completed her own training as a volunteer firefighter and EMT, and her children’s grandfather is also a retired volunteer firefighter. Gavian’s style is practical, solution focused, compassionate and direct. For over 20 years, she has worked with a variety of populations who have experienced extreme stress including in Israel, Gaza, Kosovo, with the FDNY after 9/11, refugees, gang members, firefighters & police, school shooting communities, as well as with executives, professionals, teachers and those with a variety of chronic medical conditions. She has held leadership positions in healthcare, designing and delivering care for health systems, and has served as a consultant and trainer to community and healthcare organizations nationwide.

Frankie Jo McNallan, Program Manager

Frankie Jo McNallan is the Program Manager for the MnFIRE Peer Support Program, having served as the Intake Coordinator since the inception of the program. Frankie Jo has served as the Administrative Assistant for the Ramsey Fire Department for five years, and as the Lead Admin and Fire Chaplain for the Brooklyn Park Fire Department for seven years. Frankie Jo’s husband Kevin is a 16-year firefighter/Captain with the Andover Fire Department and her daughter Dani has also been with the department for five years. Kevin and Frankie Jo are MnFIRE trainers and peer supporters and have both served on the Anoka County Public Safety Peer Support (ACPSPS) team for four years. Frankie Jo also currently serves as Board Secretary for ACPSPS and is a member of the Public Safety Standardized Training (PSST) advisory board. Additionally, Frankie Jo has led the Fire Administrative Support Team (FAST Team) for the last eight years, which is a networking resource for metro fire department admins.

Marie Segar, Intake Coordinator

Marie Segar currently works as a Prevention Administrator for the Edina Fire Department, and also serves as one of Edina’s Fire Chaplains. Prior to joining Edina, Marie was a paid-on-call firefighter for 10 years on Eagan Fire, as well as a Prevention Specialist for the City of Eagan. Like many in the fire industry, Marie wore several other hats in Eagan. She served as Secretary of the Relief Association for 8 years, a Lieutenant for 5 years and was quite involved in the water rescue and the youth fire intervention program for Dakota County. Throughout the years Marie has had family and friends suffer from cancer, heart disease, addictions and mental health issues. As a result of her experiences, she is excited to support MnFIRE in helping ease the path for others in the fire family.