Chief Herbert Redden will retire from the Dayton Fire Department, effective June 30. Redden joined DFD as assistant fire chief for emergency services in 2005 and became chief in May 2008.
“His leadership style helped guide changes that enabled the department to meet the challenges of today’s firefighting and emergency medical response operations,” City Manager Tim Riordan said in a statement.
Dayton fought through a recent multiyear period where it could not hire firefighters because of a Justice Department lawsuit over discrimination in testing. To cover its needs, the city hired dozens of civilian paramedics to handle EMS work, while moving dual-trained firefighters away from EMS duty. The city now has its first class of 24 recruits going through its fire academy.
Prior to coming to Dayton, Redden served in the Memphis, Tenn., Fire Department from 1969 to 2000.
“Being a fire employee is not an easy career, but it is the passion and commitment of our fire staff that give the community a safe place to live, work, and raise a family,” Redden said. “I am very proud of the men and women in the Dayton Fire Department, and I am proud to have served the community alongside them.”
Riordan said he will name an interim fire chief to serve until a permanent selection process can be completed.
“We hate to see him go. He’s been a great chief; a firefighters’ chief,” said Dayton Firefighters Local 136 president Gaye Jordan. “He cares about the crews on the street, and he has managed well during tough economic times.”