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Hovind named Galesburg Fire Chief

The Galesburg Fire Department has a new chief after the retirement of Chief Tom Simkins last month.

Fire Marshall Randy Hovind has been named the new Fire Chief for the City of Galesburg.

Hovind will be sworn in as Fire Chief on Friday, November 22, and a reception will be held at 5:00 pm prior to the December 2 Galesburg City Council meeting for the public to meet the new chief.

He has spent over 20 years fighting fires with the Galesburg Fire Department and held the position of Fire Captain and Fire Marshall at the rank of Battalion Chief.

The Galesburg native holds a Bachelor of Arts from Western Illinois University in Fire Science Administration and Management and holds several professional certifications related to fire, safety, and emergency management.

In a statement from the City, Hovind says that he is “…honored to have been selected as Fire Chief. I’ve taken on each role I’ve held with the Fire Department with enthusiasm and determination to effect the changes that bettered each position and the department as a whole. I intend to bring the same dedication to the role of chief and am ready to take the lead and build the vision for the Galesburg Fire Department.”

The City of Galesburg implemented a comprehensive search to fill the position of Fire Chief, including a community survey and final candidate interviews with both a diverse community panel and the search committee.

The Fire Chief is appointed by the City Manager and is responsible for the administration and oversight of the Galesburg Fire Department and emergency management operations of the community.

“The hiring committee was very impressed with all of the final candidates for the position of Fire Chief. This is a position which holds a great deal of responsibility, and I’m proud to announce that Fire Marshall Hovind has been selected to fill the role,” said City Manager Todd Thompson in the news release on Thursday. “He has proven himself as a leader within the department and has extensive expertise in all operations and activities of the Fire Department.”

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