More staffing changes at Vernon Fire Department with departure of deputy chief - InfoNews

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More staffing changes at Vernon Fire Department with departure of deputy chief

Deputy Vernon Fire Chief Jack Blair will leave his position at the end of March 2017.
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January 31, 2017 - 11:12 AM

VERNON - Vernon’s deputy fire chief is resigning after five years of service.

Jack Blair will leave the Vernon Fire Department on March 31, according to a media release from the city. He plans to continue his work in the private sector as a fire services consultant.

“I’m looking forward to taking on new opportunities and challenges,” Blair said in the release. “I’ve had five great years with Vernon Fire and Rescue Services and the City of Vernon. I’ve enjoyed working with Council, our Chief Administrative Officer, our partners in the local media and the residents of Vernon. And it has been a real pleasure working with the great team at Vernon Fire and Rescue Services.”

Blair was instrumental in the construction of the Fire Training Centre, which benefited the entire region, interim fire chief David Lind said.

“Jack’s work with the construction of Fire Hall #3 has also had multiple positive effects, including working with the developers to bring the project in at approximately $600,000—a cost that is almost unheard of given the scope of the work," Lind said in the release. "Vernon Fire and Rescue Services will continue to benefit from Jack’s work for many years to come.”

Blair’s departure follows a number of recent staff changes at the department. In late 2016, the city announced deputy fire chief Lawrie Skolrood, as well as emergency services coordinator Helen Sinclair and administrative assistant Liz Thomson, were all leaving. At the time, Vernon Mayor Akbal Mund said the departures were unrelated and the timing was just a coincidence.

The city is now working on recruiting a replacement for Blair. During the transition, Wayne Price, fire chief for the City of Cranbrook, will be providing short-term administrative support.

“Wayne and I have worked together successfully in the past and we share the same core values and business philosophies,” Lind said. “His support will provide us time to recruit the best replacement for Jack.”

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