Names in the News: June 13, 2021

This bi-weekly series is dedicated to the latest promotions and other news within the fire service.

DAN PEARCE took over as the new chief of the Kalispell (MT) Fire Department (KFD), where he had worked from 1990 to 1999. Pearce began his professional fire service career in 1984 and was previously a battalion chief in Clark County Fire District 5 for the Vancouver (WA) Fire Department. He has also worked as a firefighter, paramedic, and hazardous materials technician for Flathead County, Montana. Pearce assumed command from previous KFD chief Dave Dedman, who retired on June 10 after serving the department for 25 years.

RICHARD THODE will take over as the new chief of the Danbury (CT) Fire Department (DFD) after spending 34 years with the Bridgeport (CT) Fire Department (BFD), the past five years as its chief. Since 1995, he has also volunteered with training for the Stony Hill Fire Department in Bethel, Connecticut. Thode will replace DFD Interim Chief Kevin Ford, who has been in the position since January. Thode’s last day with the BFD will be June 18, and he will start his new job with the DFD on June 28.

NOEL “MAC” MCMULLEN was named the first-ever paid chief in the history of the Cecil Township (PA) Fire Department. McMullen is a 40-year veteran of both paid and volunteer departments. He was the deputy chief in Peters Township for 27 years, before becoming the safety director for a local oil and gas company five years ago. He has been a paramedic for 20 years and a state fire instructor for 25 years. McMullen said he plans to increase the number of volunteers across the township.

RON STEMPIEN will take over as the new chief of the Goldsboro (NC) Fire Department (GFD) on June 30. He is a 25-year GFD veteran and currently serves as the department’s assistant chief of support services. He began his career with the GFD in 1996 as a firefighter and was promoted to fire engineer in 1998, to fire captain in 2004, and to assistant chief in 2019. Before joining the GFD, Stempien served for four years in the United States Air Force as a fire protection specialist.

was appointed as the new chief of the Tiffin (OH) Fire & Rescue Division (TFRD) on June 7. Chappell has been the TFRD’s deputy chief since 2015 and its interim chief for the past eight months. He has served TFRD since his original appointment of firefighter/paramedic in 2004. As deputy chief, he oversaw the department’s Fire Prevention Bureau, managed the training and development of personnel, and directed its EMS operations. Chappell is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the Ohio Fire Chiefs’ Association.

To feature yourself or a fellow member in “Names in the News,” please send an e-mail with the information (60-100 words) and a high-resolution photo of the member with the subject line “NITN” to


Names in the News: May 30, 2021

Names in the News: May 16, 2021

Names in the News: May 2, 2021

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