Invited community members and city officials gathered in small groups on June 26 at Englewood’s Civic Center to meet the five finalists for the position of Englewood fire chief: Gary Curmode, Paige Day, Kevin Hammons, Andrew Marsh and Michael Schick.
Gary Sears, Englewood city manager, talked about the process that began in April to select someone to fill the fire chief vacancy created by the retirement of former chief Mike Pattarozzi and the appointment of deputy chief Dick Petau as interim chief.
Curmode is the fire chief of Sedgwick Fire Protection District near Wichita, Kan., and Day is assistant fire chief at the Missouri City, Texas, fire department. Colorado resident Schick since 1994 has been deputy chief of the fire department in Louisville that is made up of volunteers and full-time firefighters.
Hammons was deputy chief in Aurora for 20 years and, since 2007, has worked for a firm that investigates fires. Marsh was in the fire service in Frederick, Md., for years and, since 2003, has been deputy chief of the Federal Heights Fire Department.
Each candidate spoke to those attending the reception. Each gave brief summary of their qualifications and all noted they liked Englewood and would be honored to be the city’s new fire chief.
The fire chief will direct the operation of the Englewood Fire Department, with three fire stations that are staffed around the clock. The department has 58 employees and a budget of about $8 million to provide firefighting and emergency medical services within the city limits of Englewood, as well as to answer calls from surrounding agencies for automatic aid.
In April, the city began working with representatives of KRW, the consultants hired to assist Englewood in the successful search for a new police chief.
“We had 72 applications and narrowed the field to 15. The consultants checked references and did background checks and eventually narrowed the field to five,” Sears said. “Each candidate will attend June 27 interviews with two panels, a panel of department directors and a panel of a (visiting) fire chief, city official and community representatives. I will then review the recommendations for the panels and it is my hope to offer the position to one of the candidates by the first week of July.”