Finalists for Fire Chief named to replace retiring Jim Schneider

Fire Chief Jim Schneider, who will retire at the end of August.

By Jack Mayne

Three finalists for fire chief of the Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority have been selected to replace current Fire Chief Jim Schneider, who will retire at the end of August.

The four finalists include only one from the western Washington area. He is Steven Heitman, currently the fire chief at Mercer Island.

The others are Jeff Helm, currently the division chief at Sioux Falls Fire Rescue in South Dakota, and Matthew Morris, fire chief for Henderson, Nev. (EDITOR’S NOTE: Gordon Olson, chief of Thornton Fire Department in Colorado, has removed his name for consideration).

These four finalists will be introduced to the department and community at a public reception on July 24.

Several stakeholder groups will conduct “final assessment” of the candidates beginning July 25, with the final selection made by the Regional Fire Authority governing board.

The board is scheduled to approve the new Fire Chief at its Aug. 16 Governance Board meeting.

The public is encouraged to come and meet the four finalists at the reception where the candidates will be given the chance to introduce themselves and the public will have the opportunity to leave comments for the department’s consideration.

The July 24 reception will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Kent Senior Center, 600 E. Smith Street in Kent.

Comments are closed.