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Fresno Finds Its New Fire Chief. He Already Was Leading the Department.

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Fresno City Manager Georgeanne White, left, and Mayor Jerry Dyer, right, introduce Billy Alcorn as the 16th fire chief in department history on Friday, July 21, 2023. (City of Fresno)
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A nationwide search for the Fresno Fire Department’s new chief produced a choice well-known to City Hall leaders.

City Manager Georgeanne White and Mayor Jerry Dyer introduced Billy Alcorn on Friday as the 16th chief in department history.

In March, Alcorn took over as interim chief following the retirement of Kerri Donis. He will officially assume the top spot on Monday, July 31.

A Department That Strives for Excellence: Alcorn

“The Fresno Fire Department is a progressive organization that is rich in tradition,” Alcorn said in a news release. “Our members strive to be a standard of excellence in the fire service and demonstrate that day in and day out through their persistence and resilience.

“I am incredibly thankful and lucky to achieve this position and I will ensure that this department does everything possible to provide the best services to the citizens of Fresno.”

White and Dyer praised Alcorn’s leadership skills.

“The Fresno Fire Department is entering an important time in its rich 146-year history, and Billy Alcorn is the perfect person to lead the men and women who protect our city,” said White. “(The department) now has more firefighters than ever – and the department is positioned to serve Fresno residents at the highest level. Chief Alcorn is a leader with integrity, and I have complete faith in his ability to excel in this role.”

Said Dyer: “Billy Alcorn has proven himself as an outstanding leader who takes pride in his profession and the Fresno Fire Department. I have absolute confidence in Chief Alcorn’s ability to lead the department and to serve this community in a professional and dedicated manner.”

Started Firefighter Career in Merced

Alcorn began his career in 2003 as a paid call firefighter with the Merced County Fire Department before joining Cal Fire. In 2004, hired on with the Merced City Fire Department and rose through the ranks to become fire chief in 2019.

Aspiring to work in a larger organization, Alcorn was selected as a deputy chief for the Fresno Fire Department in January 2021.

Alcorn has a bachelor’s degree in fire administration and is a graduate of the Executive Fire Officer Program at the National Fire Academy.

 

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