City Manager Mark Scott announced that J. Robert Brown Jr. of Stafford, Virginia, a public safety veteran with more than of 30 years of experience in fire and emergency management, has been named Fire Chief for the City of Fresno. He is expected to begin work on Monday, May 14.

“Chief Brown’s appointment comes at the end of a very thorough, national search to fill the Chief’s position,” Scott said. “He came to us highly recommended and proved the breadth of experience in a recruitment process that involved wide participation by local and state fire officials, local citizens, and representatives of our City government. The Fresno Fire Department is one of the best in the State, with a long, proud tradition of service. We look forward to Chief Brown’s leadership.”

Since September 2005, Brown has served as Stafford County, Virginia’s, first county fire chief, where he merged 14 independent fire and/emergency services agencies into one agency. In that position, Brown oversaw a traditional Fire and Rescue Department that provides technical rescue operations, dive-rescue, swift-water rescue, marine firefighting and rescue, and an air-rescue helicopter partnership. He led a staff of more than 650 career and volunteer personnel.

“It is an honor to be appointed as fire chief of the City of Fresno. I am excited about working with some of the finest firefighters in the country and extremely excited about the opportunities that lie ahead for the city and the department,” Brown said.

Prior to Stafford County, Brown served a combined 15 years as fire chief for leading departments in the metropolitan areas of Kansas City, Cincinnati and Denver. He also served back-to-back terms as the president of the Colorado State Fire Chiefs and president of the Missouri Valley Division of the International Association of Fire Chiefs.

He also has taught extensively for the National Fire Academy in the areas of Emergency Response to Terrorism, Incident Management and Emergency Medical Services Special Operations. His expertise in these areas led to his appointment to the World Trade Center, U.S. Fire Administration Response, After-Action Review Team in 2002.

Brown received a bachelor’s degree in public administration and also is a graduate of the Executive Fire Officer program at the National Fire Academy. He and his wife, Beth, have been married 22 years and are the parents of four boys. His base salary will be $160,404.