City of Tallahassee Names New Fire Chief

Tallahassee City Manager Anita Favors Thompson today announced the hiring of the Tallahassee Fire Department’s new Fire Chief. Jerome Gaines, currently of Fort Wayne, Ind., will begin his new position on June 30.


“The Tallahassee Fire Department has a history of strong leadership built on first-hand experience and a heart for public service,” Favors Thompson said. “Mr. Gaines is a lifelong public servant. I’m excited to welcome him to Tallahassee.”


Gaines has worked for the Fort Wayne Fire Department (FWFD) for more than 30 years and currently serves as the Assistant Chief over the Operations Division. He brings with him a variety of experiences and knowledge. Some highlights of his career include a focus on employee development and training; demonstrated leadership abilities as Section Chief, helping to oversee FWFD’s 18 fire stations and more than 350 employees; and efforts to improve area services through mutual aid with other agencies and the implementation of a computer-aided dispatching system to reduce response times.


He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from Indiana Wesleyan University. He has also graduated from the Allen County, Ind., Policy Academy; National Fire Academy Arson Investigation Program; and National Fire Academy Chief Officer Leadership Program.


As the Fire Chief, he will be responsible for a total staff of approximately 280 and an annual budget of $33,942,932. He will report directly to Dee Crumpler, Assistant City Manager of Safety and Neighborhood Services.