From Botetourt County: Fincastle, VA – Botetourt County has appointed Jeff Beckner as its first Chief of Fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS). Beckner, a current resident of the County, brings more than 30 years of fire and EMS service and leadership to his new post. In this role, Beckner will oversee a combined fire and EMS system of 7 volunteer fire departments, 6 volunteer rescue squads, and a County department of 54 full and part-time staff. He will manage the daily operations of the Department, serve as Emergency Services Coordinator for the County, and administer the budget and capital improvements plan for the fire and EMS system. Beckner joins the Botetourt County team after a career-long tenure with Roanoke City’s Department of Fire-EMS.
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Most recently, he served as Deputy Chief of Operations where he oversaw 255 uniformed personnel. In that position, Beckner was responsible for a number of day-to-day operations for the Department, worked on the City’s Infrastructure Budget Team, and sought to enhance the training for company officers. Prior to his service as Deputy Chief, Beckner held nearly every leadership position in the City’s Department, including Lieutenant, 1st Lieutenant, Captain, and Battalion Chief. “The greatest thing about this opportunity is being able to work with the firefighters and EMS workers of Botetourt County,” said Beckner. “I am really excited to roll up my sleeves and start working with both the volunteers and the staff and see what we can do.” Beckner will be leading the County’s Department of Fire and EMS, which has been delivering services with its career staff since 2001. The Department in conjunction with the volunteer departments and squads is responsible for providing fire, EMS, and hazardous materials responses, emergency management, special operations (water, search, and technical rescue), and fire prevention and public education efforts. As such, the Department serves as a vital and visible part of the County’s total services to citizens. “Chief Beckner is going to be a great addition to the leadership in Botetourt County,” said Kathleen Guzi, County Administrator. “His years of broad experience and leadership plus his deep knowledge of the region and the County make him an excellent choice for our first Chief.” Beckner begins his service as Chief on September 15, 2014.