Hopkinton selectmen decide to begin search for fire chief
In September, the town lost its first full-time fire chief when Rick Schaefer suffered fatal cardiac arrest while on the job. Schaefer had held the position since 1999 and had been a member of the department for 32 years.
Shortly after Schaefer';s death, the board promoted Deputy Chief Jeff Yale, a 20-year veteran of the department, to the position of interim chief.
Last month, the board discussed waiting until December to post the position for a new chief, but after having conversations with some of the members of the department, the board decided Monday night to start the process rolling.
';The feedback from some people in the department was that we should move forward,'; said O';Brien. ';They want some finality to all of this.';
O';Brien also said the board is concerned that they are over-burdening Yale, who only works for the department part time and has another full-time job.
';It';s a lot of responsibility to put on a person who';s only working part-time,'; O';Brien said.
The board has modified the job description of fire chief with some minor changes, said O';Brien, and will be advertising the position starting this week. Then work will begin on assembling a committee to oversee the hiring process.
';A search committee will be formed including a former fire chief from town and a fire chief from a local community who will help us through this process,'; said O';Brien.
The board will also be asking members from the fire department and the community at large to join the search committee as well.
O';Brien said the position will continue to be advertised through November, and the committee will be formed before the closure of the posting.
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Nancy Bean Foster may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.