(A message from our Board of Commissioners.)
It is with mixed emotions that we announce the retirement of Lake Wenatchee Fire and Rescue Chief Mick Lamar effective June 1st, 2020. Chief Lamar retires with over 40 years in the fire service. In 1980, he started as a firefighter at the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station. Recognizing his talents as both a firefighter and a leader, he was assigned as Battalion Chief for the Eastern half of the Puget Sound Federal Fire Department. Over the years, he has also served as the Fire Chief at Cornet Bay, Silver Lake, and Ponderosa.
Chief Lamar joined Chelan County Fire District 9 in 2005 as a volunteer firefighter. In 2012 he was unanimously appointed by this board to be the Fire Chief. Over the last eight years under his leadership and direction, LWFR transitioned from a small rural district to a full-service fire and rescue department. Always seeking ways to improve and expand the public service we provide, Chief Lamar pushed the department to develop a full scope strategic plan that outlined improvements in every area. Chief Lamar tirelessly pushed the district to become more efficient and improve. Key accomplishments under his leadership included: • Combined Fire Districts 4 and 9 to become a more efficient organization that provides services in the greater Plain and Lake Wenatchee areas. • Dramatically shortening medical emergency response times by adding emergency medical services to the district scope, training and certifying most of the staff as Emergency Medical Technicians, and housing an ambulance in Plain. • The department developed a succession plan that clearly defined job descriptions and qualifications for key positions. • Spearheaded efforts to acquire property in central Plain to allow the department to meet the growing need for services as the community expands. • Chief Lamar, tirelessly strived to upgrade the training and certifications of our firefighting team.
These and other upgrades resulted in improving our community insurance rating to the best possible for a rural fire district. More than any single accomplishment Chief Lamar established a culture of service, community, and family. Instilling a commitment that even in a small mountain town, we can lean on each other in times of challenge and ensure we come out on the other side, stronger and better prepared than before.
Chief Lamar's final day will be Sunday, May 31st. Last tones and a socially distanced ceremony will take place that morning at 0900 at station 93.
Please take a minute to thank Chief Lamar for his service and his wife, Trish, for sharing him with all of us. Chief Lamar plans to spend his time not getting up for calls at night and enjoying Trish's company and their family here in Plain.
While we will miss Chief Lamar, the district is fortunate to have another well experienced and talented leader to take over the reins. Effective June 1st, Assistant Chief Dave Walker will take over as Fire Chief. Dave comes with a wealth of experience as a career firefighter and Battalion Chief with Kirkland Fire.
Lake Wenatchee Fire and Rescue Board of Commissioners Rollie Schmitten Mike Payne Bill Gibbs