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Himes named top candidate for EFD chief

Himes

ELKINS — Interim Elkins Fire Chief Steven Himes has been chosen as the top candidate for the fire chief position.

Elkins City Council’s ad hoc Fire Chief Hiring Committee met Monday afternoon and entered executive session to discuss the five final candidates for chief of the Elkins Fire Department.

After leaving the executive session, Committee Chair Rob Chenoweth announced that no actions had been taken and no decisions made in executive session. Committee member Chris Lowther moved that the committee recommend to council the appointment of Himes as the chief of the EFD at an annual salary of $55,000. The motion passed unanimously.

The appointment will not be final until council votes on the matter. Council’s next scheduled meeting is Aug. 5.

Himes told The Inter-Mountain he is honored to be considered.

“As old as our department is, we’ve had very few chiefs, I think in 123 years we’ve only had 11,” Himes said Monday evening. “So it’s humbling and I’m looking forward to working with the guys to continue doing what we do.”

Himes is currently one of the EFD’s three captains. He has been with the department 18 1/2 years.

“Since I was about eight years old and watching my dad as a volunteer, I wanted to be a fireman,” Himes said. “Then later on I found out you could do it and get paid for it, I didn’t think there was really anything else out there. But if you would have told me 18 1/2 years ago that I was going to be chief someday, I would have told you that you were nuts.”

A total of 22 candidates entered applications for the EFD chief position, Chenoweth said during a June Elkins City Council meeting.

After more than 40 years of volunteer and paid service at the Elkins Fire Department, Chief Tom Meader announced his retirement during an April City Council meeting.

Himes was appointed interim chief and a committee was formed to search for Meader’s replacement. Meader’s retirement was effective April 30.

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