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On Wednesday, December 12, 2018, Goochland County officially announced the resignation of Goochland County Fire-Rescue Chief William MacKay. He will end his formal service as Chief on January 31, 2019.
Chief MacKay has served as Fire-Rescue Chief for over eight years, beginning his tenure on June 28, 2010.
“The county is grateful for his leadership of Fire-Rescue and his involvement in advancing the combination career and volunteer department over his eight years of service,” remarked County Administrator John A. Budesky. “His expertise in emergency management will be greatly missed and we wish him success as he embarks on his future endeavors.”
Fire-Rescue has accomplished many important milestones during his tenure, building upon the past and positioning the department for a bright future. The first county-built fire station, Fire Station 6 – Hadensville, was designed, constructed, and opened under his direction.
Standards for fire and emergency medical service (EMS) coverage and response times were established. In response, career staffing to supplement volunteer coverage increased from 11 field providers in 2009 to 33 field providers in 2018. Fire-Rescue currently has a total of 37 firefighter positions.
As a result, four of the county’s six stations now are regularly staffed with a minimum of two staff members, on a 24-hour basis. Response times have been reduced and coverage exists in eastern, central, and western portions of the county.
“I wish to thank Goochland County for allowing me to serve in this capacity,” remarked Chief MacKay. “I value and appreciate the opportunities and support that have been afforded to me as an individual during my tenure with Goochland County.”
Under his leadership, fire-rescue has successfully integrated a combination volunteer and career staffed agency into a cohesive all-hazards department. In addition, the department established a career staff rank structure for officers, providing new leadership opportunities and responsibilities. The county has also increased compensation for career staff position, offering competitive pay.
Chief MacKay added, “For over eight years the department and it’s members have also enjoyed a supportive relationship with the community as well as elected and appointed officials and I am confident that will continue into the future.”
During his tenure the county’s Insurance Services Office (ISO) rating saw improvement in all three dimensions that are evaluated, and all residents benefited from the dramatic improvements in Goochland’s ratings. These improvements are the results of several investments Goochland made in both infrastructure and county services.
Prior to coming to Goochland, Chief MacKay served as Fire Chief for the City of Niagara Falls, New York for four years. From 1980 until 2005 MacKay worked for Fairfax County, retiring as Battalion Chief, Special Operations. From 2005 to 2006 he served as Deputy Coordinator of Emergency Management for Fairfax County. He has been a certified instructor at the National Fire Academy. He served as Operations Chief for the response to the World Trade Center attack in 2001 and as Emergency Operation Center Manager for Deployment to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.