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Chad Kimple named Acting Fire Chief for Orcas Island Fire and Rescue

EASTSOUND - The San Juan County Fire Protection District #2 Board of Fire Commissioners held its Regular Meeting on July 1, 2024 at 3 p.m. to have discussions of Orcas Island Fire & Rescue (OIFR) operations and the Fire Chief vacancy. 

Fire Marshal Chad Kimple, a previous employee of the district and current Volunteer Firefighter, had reached out to offer his services as the interim chief.

The board of three—Chair Ehrmantraut, Gaylord, and Hansen—decided on a list of interview questions and the Chair allowed Mr. Kimple to address them. The room was filled with community members, current and former staff and volunteers of OIFR. Mr. Kimple is well known in the department and has held many roles with OIFR since he was 16 years old as a cadet.

After a 30-minute executive session, most of which the applicant, Kimple, was present to discuss his qualifications for employment, the Board returned to the open meeting. With few further remarks, a motion to immediately name Chad Kimple the Acting Fire Chief was approved. The Board welcomed Acting Chief Kimple to join them at the front of the room for the remainder of the meeting.

Chad Kimple is a lifelong resident of Orcas Island in San Juan County. He holds an associate’s degree in Fire Science from Columbian Southern University.

Chad began his fire service career path in 2002 in High School with OIFR. In the summer of 2005, he worked with the Washington State Department of Natural Resources as a wildland firefighter. In 2006, Chad became a part-time employee of OIFR and became a full-time response Lieutenant in 2008.  

Chad has risen through the ranks from volunteer FF/EMT to career Captain Duty Officer of D Shift. During this time, he has worked as a Training Officer, Health and Safety Officer, Apparatus Maintenance, and many other roles, including Acting Assistant Chief. 

In 2021, Chad switched careers from OIFR to San Juan County as the County Fire Marshal. As the County Fire Marshal, he reviews all permitting and performs plan reviews, conducts Fire and Life Safety Inspections, Administers the Burn Permit Program, and is a WA State Certified Fire Investigator.

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