EDMOND — Jake Rhoades, a 20-year fire service veteran, has been hired as Edmond's fire chief.
Rhoades is expected to start Oct. 29, city officials said Monday.
He is currently deputy fire chief with the Rogers Fire Department in Arkansas, a position he has held since 2009.
“We had three very good finalists, and I chose Jake because he's the best fit for the future of the Edmond Fire Department, our organization and our community,” City Manager Larry Stevens said.
Stevens created a focus group to help recruit someone to replace former chief Gil Harryman, who retired in June after 35 years with the department.
Community members Mike Roark and Martha Turner joined the city staff in the search for a new chief.
Rhoades started his firefighting career with the Stillwater Fire Department, where he was later promoted to training officer. After 16 years with the Stillwater department, he became the assistant fire chief for Jenks Fire Rescue.
“To say that I am excited for the opportunity would be an understatement,” Rhoades said. “I am truly honored to have been selected and look forward to stepping in as the fire chief of a great organization. I know my education and experience will provide an asset for the city of Edmond as well as the members of the department.”
Rhoades will earn $111,017 a year.
“My plan is simple: Be the hardest-working person in the city for citizens as well as the firefighters so that the fire department provides the level of service that is expected and deserved within the city of Edmond for many years to come,” he said.
Rhoades serves on the International Association of Fire Chiefs Safety, Health and Survival Section's board of directors. He is also a member of the National Fire Protection Association technical committee on risk management.
A graduate of Oklahoma Christian University, Rhoades has a master's of science degree in executive fire service leadership from Grand Canyon University. He is a graduate of the Nation Fire Academy's Executive Fire Officer Program and has obtained designations from the Center of Public Safety Excellence as both a chief fire officer and chief medical officer.
Edmond Fire Department operates five fire stations across the city's 90 square miles.