Mike Jones was sworn in as the Storm Lake Fire Chief Wednesday afternoon. He was selected Tuesday night out of a field of three candidates.
Jones has been acting fire chief since December of 1999 when long-time fire chief Ron Wilson retired.
The job has a tradition of longevity. Jones will be only the seventh chief in the history of the department, which dates to 1881.
Jones said he thanks all of the city staff he has worked over his years in Storm Lake. He said he has seen a lot of support and patience while the fire chief selection process was going on.
"It's been a real privilege to serve these past 15 years or so and I look forward to serving another 15 or 20," he said.
Jones is a lifelong resident of Storm Lake. He and his wife, Patty, have three children and one grandchild.
Jones began his career with the Storm Lake Fire Department in 1983 as a volunteer firefighter. He became a full-time firefighter in 1986. He has held the ranks of firefighter, lieutenant, assistant chief and acting fire chief.
City Administrator John Call swore Jones in as Chief.
"Mr. Jones has truly earned the title of Storm Lake Fire Chief through hard work, dedication and a commitment to serve the citizens of Storm Lake," Call said. "Mr. Jones' experience and credentials quickly pushed him to the top of the list during the Civil Service process."
Mayor Jon Kruse said it was a pleasure to welcome Jones as fire chief, saying that he has proven leadership qualities.
A community coffee in Chief Jones' honor will be at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, March 20, in the city council chambers at City Hall, 620 Erie St. The public is invited to attend.