Mayor names interim fire chief

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) — A week after the unexpected resignation of Charleston's fire chief, Mayor John Tecklenburg has announced an interim chief.

According to a memo release by city officials, Chief John Tippett will be Interim chief starting April 7.

Mayor Tecklenburg released the following statement.

“I am certain that Chief Tippet has the experience and leadership skills required to successfully lead the Charleston Fire Department. As you know, he has served in the Charleston Fire Department as Deputy Chief of Operations for the last 8 years. Prior to that, Chief Tippett began his career in the fire service in Montgomery County, Maryland, where he rose through the ranks from Firefighter to Battalion Chief over the course of 35 years. He has extensive leadership experience in both fire safety and operations. He also served as project manager for the International Association of Fire Chiefs for eleven years, focusing primarily on firefighter health and safety issues. Chief Tippett is certified as a Chief Fire Officer by the Center for Public Safety Excellence, Health and Safety Officer by the Fire Department Safety Officers Association, Instructor II by the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress and National Registry Emergency Medical Technician-Basic. He finished his Bachelor’s Degree in Fire Science and earned his Master’s Degree in Emergency Services Management while maintaining his responsibilities as operations chief.

“Finally, I would like to thank you once again for everything you do to ensure the safety of our citizens and city. We are all deeply grateful for your service each and every day. And, to the outstanding firefighters of Ladder 101, I look forward to seeing you at the ladder dedication this Sunday on Daniel Island.”

Brack was hired in 2012 as Charleston's first female fire chief. She came to the city with 30 years of experience after a nationwide search. She came to Charleston from Eugene, Oregon. She called her resignation a "personal decision" and said she had "mixed feelings" about the job.

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