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Changing what I do at the Fire Department

By Andrew Pollack on 02/09/2014 at 11:33 AM EST

So, here’s a bit of a change. A couple of weeks ago I let the chief know that it was time for me to step down as the Lieutenant of our Engine 1. Once a replacement is chosen, I’ll still be a firefighter but won’t be an officer any longer. There are a number of reasons for this, but the best explanation I can give is that it is time to let someone else grow into that role and make their own contribution, while at the same time I’ve got plenty of other things going on that keep me from putting as much time into it as I’d like.

Firefighting is not my primary career, and as such there’s no real need for me to promote and advance my career. While there’s no formal mechanism to revisit the officer positions unless someone really messes up, I don’t think the position should be a lifetime appointment or that I should stand in the way of other capable people who have plenty to contribute. I’ve always described my firefighting skills as adequate but not exceptional – which is fine, the world needs as many adequate firefighters as it can get.


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re: Changing what I do at the Fire DepartmentBy Jason Hook on 02/10/2014 at 07:42 AM EST
I've been up and down the ladder (not connected to a fire truck) a little bit
in my brand of volunteering. I'm currently enjoying the bit down the ladder.
Personally I value skills over management roles. Anyone can be a manager (not
everyone is good at it).

It's fantastic that you volunteer your time (in spite of the obvious risks) to
your community. I've no doubt without you and your colleagues fewer lives and
less property would be saved.


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