The City of Sycamore, IL (18,577), just 60 miles west of Chicago, IL and 35 miles southeast of Rockford, IL is the true heart of the Midwest!  Sycamore’s historic downtown offers quant sophistication served with true hospitality!  With luxurious accommodations, families and visitors enjoy locally owned shops, family events, theater, ballet, and a wide variety of culinary experiences.  It has a commercial district based and centered on Illinois Route 64 and is the county seat of Dekalb County and was named after the sycamore trees in the area.  One of the feature events that dates back to 1962 is the annual Sycamore Pumpkin Festival held on the lawn of the Dekalb County Courthouse.  From a simple display on a front lawn 50 years ago, it now features many activities, a carnival and parade with literally hundreds and hundreds of carefully carved and decorated pumpkins on display.  Thousands of residents and visitors alike in the Midwest and throughout the broader United States attend this great annual family event.  Sycamore features a Council-Manager form of government with a mayor and eight Alderman representing four wards (two per ward).  The Mayor and Alderman serve four-year terms with one of the two Alderman from each ward being elected every two years.
The Fire Chief is the executive in charge of overseeing the department providing state-of-the-art fire, emergency medical, rescue, hazardous materials, fire prevention, risk reduction and community support programs and services.  The Fire Chief works closely with the City staff and regional partners in a very collaborative and professional environment. 
  • The Fire Department is comprised of a Fire Chief, two (2) Deputy Fire Chiefsone Administrative Assistant, and 27 operations personnel.  Operations personnel are divided into three shifts assigned to a 24/48 shift schedule.  All line personnel are Licensed Paramedics.  Each shift is assigned eight (8) full-time personnel (6 firefighter/paramedics and 2 Lieutenants) and is supplemented by 3 swing shift personnel.  The daily minimum staffing is 6.  
  • The Department provides emergency and support services through two divisions:  
    • The Administration Division provides the support for the Operations Division activities which includes:  operation budget preparation and administration, grant application and administration, emergency vehicle and equipment repair and maintenance, fire station facility repairs and maintenance, fire and emergency medical service continuing education training, computer system and related software support, fire prevention program including public fire education, and special event planning.     
    • The Operations Division is the service delivery section of the organization.  The Operations Division is responsible for the provision of Fire Suppression, Rescue, Emergency Medical Services, Hazardous Materials First Responder services.
  • The Department covers 62.5 mi2 of which the City consists of 9.74 mi2.  The service area consists of the City proper (approximately 18,577 residents) and the Sycamore Fire Protection District outside of the City (approximately 2,500 residents).
  • The Department covers the City and District service area from two (2) fire stations.  Fire Station 1 is the home of two (2) Engines (one ALS)two (2) ALS medic units, a brush/grass vehicle and a utility vehicle.  Fire Station 2 is the home of one (1ALS Engine, one (1) pumper-tender, two (2) ALS medic units, a brush/grass vehicle, a heavy rescue squad, and a semirigid inflatable rescue boat.
  • The Department receives its E9-1-1 and dispatch services from the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office.
  • The Department operates on a budget of $4,462,581 (FY2022).
  • The Department responded to 2,924 calls for fire, EMS and other services in FY2022.
  • The Department is a member of MABAS Division #6 and has members on the Division #6 TRT and Haz Mat teams.  
  • The shift work force is represented by the International Association of Firefighters (IAFF).
  • The City ISO Rating is a 4 and the rural area an 8B.
The Ideal Candidate:
“Innovative, Dynamic and Visionary Leader”
  • An experienced and collaborative fire/EMS leader with demonstrated managerial, interpersonal, and customer service skills.
  • A strong communicator with all facets of a modern fire/EMS provider.
  • An individual committed to the process of continuous improvement through study, data analysis, risk taking, and follow through.
  • Steady, Approachable, and Dependable.
  • A commitment to the organization with a genuine confidence and approachability to residents, business, and governmental leaders featuring strong communication skills.  
  • A Fire Chief that is an integral and engaged leader, with a strong background in modern fire, EMS, emergency management, and all hazard’s practices.  
  • A Fire Chief that understands the need to use data for problem solving and community risk reduction efforts.
  • The ability to mentor and foster leadership roles within the staff, succession planning, and a global vision of the community’s needs are critical.  Creativity and the ability to guide and balance change is a must. 
  • Strong budget skills supported by conservative fiscal management.
  • Experience with managing career personnel.
  • Experience with working with a collective bargaining group.
Successful candidates should also:
  • Possess a bachelor’s degree in Public Safety Leadership, Public Administration, Fire Science, Business Management or related field from an accredited college or university is required.  A master’s degree is highly desired. 
  • Must have 10 years of senior officer leadership serving a community of similar size or greater with a comparable budget and personnel staffing levels is required.
  • Other additional desirable qualification include: a graduate of the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer (or enrolled with a specific completion date), Chief Fire Officer Designation (or in process with a specific completion date), or similar certifications. 
Compensation and Benefits
The annual salary range for this position is $135,000 – $145,000 +/- DOQ.   The City requires residency within the City corporate limits within 6 months of appointment (there is some flexibility and can be discussed at time of offer and be negotiated within reason).  The Chief is part of a “on-call” rotation every third week along with the Deputy Chiefs for responses and expected to be available 24/7 during that period.  The City offers a competitive benefits package including paid time off, medical, dental and life insurance, and options for retirement programs. The City of Sycamore is an equal opportunity employer.
How to Apply 
Candidates should apply by September 30, 2022 with resume, cover letter and contact information for five work-related references to Questions may be addressed to the attention of T.E Sashko, Vice President, GovHR USA, 630 Dundee Road, #225, Northbrook, IL 60062. Tel: 847-380-3240×123, or  
Application Deadline: September 30, 2022

Posted: 2022-09-14

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