Former chief to lead fire department during search
Posted: February 26, 2013
The Winchester Star
WINCHESTER — City officials announced Monday that former chief Frank Wright will be the interim city fire and rescue chief following the departure of Scott Cullers.
“We are very fortunate to have Frank available to return to the Department...” Dale Iman, Winchester city manager, said in a media release. “Frank’s vast knowledge of and experience with the Winchester Fire and Rescue Department will be beneficial in maintaining current services and continuing to move the organization forward.”
Cullers, 59, announced his retirement in late January. His last day with the department was Saturday. Little explanation has been given on why he retired, other than his statement that it was time.
Wright — who originally retired from the department June 1, 2010 — said he offered to temporarily take over the position after meeting with Iman to fill him in on the history of the department and give insight on what to look for in the next chief. Iman has been city manager since April.
“I put 35 years in the department,” he said during a Monday phone interview.
He added that a love of the department and community brought him out of retirement.
“I’m very excited about returning to the city and working with the volunteer and career staff as well as our community,” Wright said. “I can’t wait to get started and to get reacquainted with the department.”
His first day on the job was Monday.
According to the city’s human resources department, Wright will be paid $50 per hour and is a part-time employee who will work about 25 hours a week.
Wright began his career as a volunteer firefighter at Shawnee Fire Company in 1972. He was hired by the city in 1974 as a dispatcher and in 1975 as a career firefighter.
Iman said in the release that the decision to bring him back as opposed to temporarily appointing someone from within the department was to ensure that all internal candidates for the permanent position are provided a level playing field.
To fill the position, the city will initiate a national search using the following publications and networking organizations in addition to local media sources: Virginia Fire Chiefs Association, International City-County Management Association, National League of Cities, Virginia Municipal League and International Fire Chiefs Association.
Iman estimated in a recent phone interview that finding a new, permanent chief would take a couple of months.
The salary range for the permanent position is $70,553.60 to $112,902.40, according to a city advertisement.
To apply or learn more about the job, visit winchesterva.gov.
The deadline to apply is 5 p.m. March 8.
— Contact Melissa Boughton at email@example.com