Only one of three finalists allusive to become Toledo’s aing blaze arch appear actuality abundantly questioned about his abilities to baby-sit added than 500 firefighters.
Toledo Agent Blaze Arch Brian Byrd
Battalion Arch Brian Byrd said he batten to Ambassador Wade Kapszukiewicz this anniversary about diversity, budgets, his eyes to advance the department, the firefighters’ union, and added topics.
Assistant Arch Karen Marquardt said she brought her resume to a contempo affair with the mayor, d she was interviewing for the post. The two never discussed the blaze arch job.
And Battalion Arch David Hitt said he didn’t alike apperceive he was actuality eyed as the aing accessible arch until he accustomed a buzz alarm from the ambassador Tuesday, the aforementioned day Mr. Kapszukiewicz publicly articular his three finalists.
The ambassador did not appeal resumes from centralized candidates, and did not accost candidates from alfresco the department. He declared the chase for the new arch as breezy back he appear the finalists Tuesday.
While the city’s allotment allows the ambassador to baddest the aing arch at his leisure, Arch Hitt and Chief Marquardt are analytic the action by which the Kapszukiewicz administering is allotment the man or woman who will baby-sit a blaze force that serves a burghal of about 276,500 people.
Councilman Chris Delaney agreed that the accommodation is ultimately up to the mayor, but he said it was “unusual” for Mr. Kapszukiewicz not to accost resumes from absorbed parties.
“How did the candidates become candidates then?” he asked. “To me, it seems odd that there wasn’t an appliance process.”
Karen Poore, the mayor’s assurance administrator and a agent arch of staff, said she has no agnosticism Mr. Kapszukiewicz will accomplish the appropriate decision, and at the end of the day the accommodation is his and his alone.
“It’s absolutely not a process. I don’t apperceive why anybody keeps talking about a process,” Ms. Poore said. “There is no academic process. There doesn’t accept to be a process. It’s the mayor’s accommodation on who he chooses to be the chief.”
City Council President Matt Cherry said he does not accept any affair with the breezy attributes of the mayor’s account action and will abutment his selection.
“I anticipate the ambassador has a acceptable handle on the blaze administering and has talked with a lot of association who accept been about for a continued time,” he said.
Mayor Kapszukiewicz ahead said he is attractive for a applicant he can assignment with effectively; addition with able administering abilities and a plan to access assortment aural the department.
The ambassador through a agent Friday beneath to animadversion added on the amount until a alternative has been made.
Battalion Arch David Hitt
Chief Hitt said he was alleged to the mayor’s appointment in June to altercate a training amount the anniversary afore Blaze Arch Luis Santiago appear his ambition to retire in August. That altercation eventually acquired into an airy account for the Toledo Blaze and Rescue Department’s top post, the army arch said.
Chief Hitt said he did not accompany a resume to the affair because he didn’t apperceive it was an interview. Then, for about a month, he said he had no abstraction he was actuality advised for the chief’s position until he accustomed the buzz alarm from the ambassador Tuesday.
“I would accept accepted added absolute questions that anon absorb me and my experience,” Arch Hitt said. “I would accept additionally accepted to apperceive what he was attractive for, for it to be fabricated bright what he was attractive for. I’m attractive for article added academic and I didn’t get that.”
Chief Marquardt said she came able with her resume back alleged to a July 13 affair with the mayor. She affected she was interviewing to be the aing chief. But during the added than two-hour affair there was no altercation of the blaze chief’s job, her eyes for the department, or her affairs should she be alleged for the position, she said.
She added she was not asked about diversity, policies, her plans, or association involvement: all capacity she capital to discuss.
“There’s some things I absolutely capital him to apperceive about me. I would adulation to accept the befalling to run the administering as blaze arch and not as the abettor chief,” she said.
The ambassador did ask about Local 92, the firefighters’ union, and Arch Santiago, she said. The accord amid Arch Santiago and the abutment has been acerb at times. In May, 2015, abutment associates overwhelmingly accurate a vote of no aplomb in the chief, but aftermost December, Arch Santiago and abutment leaders said they were attractive advanced to a new year of adequate alive relationships.
Toledo Blaze and Rescue Administering Abettor Arch Karen Marquardt
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Chief Marquardt said she aggregate with the ambassador her assessment of breadth some of the breakdown amid the two parties started. She additionally said that, although she wants to be the aing arch and has for years able for the position beneath Arch Santiago’s guidance, she is not his clone.
“There are abounding times that I did not go forth with Arch Santiago and I did not acquaint that. We dealt with that abaft bankrupt doors,” she said.
Chief Byrd was the aftermost of the finalists to be interviewed Wednesday, the day a adventure announcement the candidates was appear in The Blade.
He said he was initially alleged to the mayor’s appointment about addition topic, but he accustomed notification aftermost anniversary that the affair would additionally be about the chief’s position. He came to the account Wednesday with resume in hand.
He said he and the ambassador discussed topics like administering styles, accretion assortment in the department, administering finances, the administration’s accord with the union, accretion EMS responses, arrangement negotiations, and accepted responsibilities of the chief.
“It was a actual informal, but advisory meeting,” Arch Byrd said.
Being blaze arch was article he never anticipation of until recently, he said. Back Arch Santiago appear his retirement, he said he was approached by associates of the administering about the idea.
Chief Byrd can assignment as a blaze agent until December, 2021, back he’s appropriate to retire because of alimony plan rules.
Chief Hitt, who said leaders from the African-American association threw his name into the arena for chief, must retire in June per the deferred retirement plan. He said he didn’t anticipate to accompany up the retirement affair back he met with Ambassador Kapszukiewicz because he didn’t apperceive he was actuality interviewed.
Had he accepted he was actuality advised for the chief’s position, he would have asked the mayor, amid added questions, if he could be rehired as arch afterwards his retirement aing year.
“The belvedere wasn’t alike there to accept that conversation,” he said.
Sylvania Township Blaze Arch Michael Ramm and Perrysburg Blaze Division Arch Rudy Ruiz, who were appointed to their positions aural the accomplished two years, said they went through academic interviews with burghal administering afore they were alleged to advance their abate departments.
Both breadth chiefs agreed all of the candidates for the Toledo blaze arch column are solid choices.
Chief Santiago said his own move into the blaze department’s top position was altered than the action now arena out in the mayor’s office.
It began with a academic affair with then-Chief Mike Wolever, who had spent years allowance prepare Chief Santiago for the administering role.
Next Arch Wolever met with then-Mayor Michael Bell. That affair was followed by a affair amid the ambassador and Arch Santiago.
Chief Santiago afresh assisted in the action to baddest Cleveland’s blaze chief. He was additionally allotment of a agent arch account for Cincinnati.
Both positions were abounding with structured application interviews, Arch Santiago said.
Chief Santiago said Ambassador Kapszukiewicz has not asked for his advocacy for the aing blaze chief.
“I assumption there’s still time to ask me,” he said. I’m academic he won’t, but maybe he will.”
Staff biographer Sarah Elms contributed to this report.
Contact Allison Dunn at [email protected], 419-724-6506 or on Twitter @AllisonDBlade.
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