The City of Fremont has appointed Curtis P. Jacobson as its new Fire Chief following a nationwide search. Chief Jacobson joins Fremont with 25 years of fire protection service in his hometown of San Jose, including 18 years of experience in increasingly senior managerial and executive leadership. He has served as San Jose Fire Chief since 2015, with prior experience as Deputy Chief, Division Chief, and Battalion Chief in a variety of bureaus.
In his new position, Chief Jacobson will be responsible for 13 in-service fire companies, nearly 160 sworn and non-sworn department members, and an annual budget of $46.5 million. The department responds to approximately 17,500 calls each year.
Chief Jacobson has been recognized for effectively managing, supervising, evaluating, mentoring, and coaching personnel under his command and has extensive experience in emergency response, fire prevention, training, education, strategic support, and administration in public safety service. He also has a wide variety of experience in the fields of emergency management, hazardous materials management, public education, employee development, recruitment and selection, and dispute resolution.
Chief Jacobson holds a number of professional credentials and degrees, including completion of Harvard’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration from San Jose State University, where he is also nearing completion on his MPA. An active community member, Chief Johnson serves as a Board Member of the San Jose Jazz Festival and is a member of the Santa Clara County Fire Chiefs Association and the Santa Clara County Black Firefighters Association. Congrats Chief!!
Edmond Rodriguez took the helm as the new Fire Chief for the City of Alameda on November 13, assuming responsibility for a department of 111 positions and an annual budget of $33.6 million.
Chief Rodriquez comes to Alameda from the City of Salinas, where he served as Fire Chief since 2012. He brings with him over 29 years of experience in fire service, having served for over 24 years in the City of Stockton in positions ranging from Deputy Fire Chief of Operations to Flight Nurse/Paramedic for Medi-Flight of Modesto and California Shock Trauma Rescue (Calstar). He served twice as President of the Monterey County Fire Chiefs Association.
“I am truly honored and humbled to serve as the City of Alameda’s next Fire Chief,” Rodriguez stated. “I will work tirelessly with community members, labor, City leadership, and City staff to ensure Alameda provides the highest level of fire and life-safety services in the Bay Area.”
Chief Rodriguez currently sits on the California Fire Chiefs Association, Northern Section EMS Subcommittee and is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC). He holds a Master’s Degree in Executive Fire Service Leadership from Grand Canyon University, a Bachelor of Science in Fire Science from Columbia Pacific University, and an Associate in Applied Science in Nursing from Excelsior College. He is also a licensed registered nurse and a certified paramedic. Way to go Ed!
The Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District Board of Directors recently swore-in Todd Harms as their new Fire Chief. TB&Co. was proud to represent the Board in the recruitment and selection of the district’s sixth fire chief. Chief Harms succeeds Chief Mark Wells who retired after 29 years of distinguished public safety service.
Chief Harms comes to California from the Phoenix Fire Department (PFD) where he rose to Deputy Chief of Special Operations. He has also been an Urban Search and Rescue team member, with deployments to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. After starting his career in Peotone, Illinois, Chief Harms invested 29 years of his career with PFD. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fire Service Management.
“I am truly honored to have this opportunity to lead Metro Fire,” said Harms. “I look forward to continually finding ways to improve our service delivery, showing the communities we serve that Metro Fire is here every day of the year to solve their problems.” Senior Recruiter and retired Mountain View Fire Chief Bradley Wardle observed, “I was increasingly impressed with Chief Harms’ operations and business acumen. It was also very apparent that he maintained a close connection to the rank and file perspective which was an important leadership quality we were seeking.”
Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole has announced the selection of Bill Walker as the City’s new Fire Chief. A longtime firefighter, Chief Walker has over two decades of experience in the fire service. He has served as a Fire Chief for the past 11 years, initially in the City of Fountain Valley and most recently for the City of Alhambra.
“We were searching for a dynamic leader for our fire department,” said Cole. “Chief Walker is that kind of leader, and our city will benefit from his track record of community collaboration and commitment to service excellence. I am confident that he will be a great contributor to building a citywide culture of data-drive, results-oriented innovation.”
“I’m excited and honored to have the opportunity to join the Santa Monica Fire Department as Chief,” he said. “Santa Monica is a remarkable and progressive place and I look forward to working with the men and women of the department to continue the long-standing tradition of providing first-rate service to the community.”
Chief Walker will begin his new duties on May 2, commanding a department of five fire stations, 108 emergency personnel and 15 civilian staff. He is the 2016 President of the Los Angeles Area Fire Chiefs Association and the 2015-16 President of the Foothill Fire Chiefs Association. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from the University of Southern California.
On March 3, Huntington Beach City Manager Fred Wilson announced the appointment of David Segura as the City’s new Fire Chief. An extensive nationwide search led the City to select Chief Segura, whose ideal combination of experience and education made him ideal for the job and he just happens to be a longtime Huntington Beach resident.
Chief Segura has over 32 years of fire service experience, having spent the last 29 years with the City of Long Beach as a Firefighter, Paramedic, Captain, Battalion Chief, Assistant Chief, and Deputy Chief. He and his family have lived in Huntington Beach for the last 16 years and have strong ties to the community.
“I firmly believe David is well qualified for this position, and the men and women of the Fire Department will be well-served with him as the new Chief,” Wilson stated. “David brings with him a good mix of strategic planning, community engagement, and organizational development.”
Chief Segura’s strong leadership and organizational management style will be put to good use in his own community, where he assumed his new position on April 4th. He is leading an eight station department supported by 198 personnel and a budget of $45.6 million.
Chief Segura holds an Associate’s Degree in Fire Science from Long Beach City College, a Bachelor’s Degree in Occupational Studies from CSU Long Beach, and is now completing his MPA at the university.
“I am excited and honored to be joining the Huntington Beach Fire Department as its Chief,” said Chief Segura. “I am looking forward to meeting the men and women of the Department, getting to know the community, and improving upon what is already an established Department.”
The change of seasons also welcomed more corporate changes in TB&Co. This week, the executive search firm announced that Bradley Wardle, who most recently served as Fire Chief in Mountain View, California, has joined the team as a Senior Recruiter. “The addition of Bradley adds to the rock star caliber of our expanding team. We are incredibly fortunate to have his talent, expertise, energy and dedication,” stated Teri Black, President/CEO of Teri Black & Co., LLC.
Chief Wardle has over 30 years of diverse experience in all areas of emergency response and management. He served as Fire Chief of the Mountain View Fire Department from April 2010 to May 2015. Prior to his service in the Silicon Valley, Chief Wardle invested the first 25 years of his career with the City of West Jordan, Utah, rising from the rank of firefighter to serving as the city’s Fire Chief for six years. During this time, he also served as Interim City Manager.
Chief Wardle has held numerous leadership and teaching positions—including serving as President of the Santa Clara County Fire Chief’s Association and President of the Utah State Fire Chief’s Association. He is a long-time member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and has taught courses in Emergency Services Public Administration as an Adjunct Faculty Member for Utah Valley University. His academic credentials include a Master of Public Administration from the University of Utah, a Bachelor of Science in Consumer Studies and Economics from the University of Utah and an Associate of Arts in Fire Science from Utah Valley State College.
Outside of work Chief Wardle enjoys outdoor sports, gardening, studying history and riding his motorcycle. He lives in Herriman Utah with his wife to whom he has been married to for 30 years. They have three grown children and two dogs.
Earlier this month, the City of Mountain View concluded its nationwide search for a new Fire Chief with the promotion of Deputy Fire Chief Juan F. Diaz. Chief Diaz had been serving in the interim role since the retirement of Brad Wardle in May and his appointment to the top position became effective on September 13th.
With nearly 27 years of firefighting experience in almost every role and 26 of those years serving the San José Fire Department, Chief Diaz stood out as the ideal successor to Chief Wardle. He began his fire service career in the mid ‘80s following his immigration from Cuba as a refugee in 1980. “I’m living the dream, being able to go to school in America and getting into the fire service,” said Chief Diaz in a statement. “My dad always said the U.S. is what you put into it: You work hard and you’ll get ahead.”
“Playing a small role in helping Chief Diaz advance his career brought unique gratification to our team,” stated Teri Black, CEO of Teri Black & Company, LLC, the executive search firm specializing in local government placements. “Juan has an incredible personal story that is so inspiring and his history contributes a rare richness and authenticity to his leadership style. He’s one of the strongest heart centered leaders I’ve ever interviewed.”
Chief Diaz earned his Bachelor’s degree Fire Science and Emergency Management from Kaplan University.