After 35 years of service as a firefighter, O’Fallon’s Fire Chief Brent Saunders has announced his retirement from the city of O’Fallon.
Saunders began his career with the O’Fallon Volunteer Fire Department in July 1983. He became chief officer in 1997, and O’Fallon’s first full-time fire chief in May 2008.
“Chief Saunders directed O’Fallon’s Fire Department through some of its most important, and fastest-growing years in history,” said Mayor Herb Roach. “He has served with professionalism, expertise, and bravery. We owe him a debt of gratitude. The entire community will miss his leadership.”
Saunders oversaw the modernization of the O’Fallon Fire Department and its establishment as a professional municipal fire department. He has served in leadership capacities with several local fire-oriented boards and resource providers, continued to create and broaden professional partnerships and been instrumental in building mutual aid agreements for the benefit of the city.
Saunders was the Illinois Fire Chief’s Association 2014 Fire Chief of the Year.
During his tenure as chief, O’Fallon’s Fire Department was upgraded from an ISO Class 4 to an ISO Class 3 rated agency. This rating places O’Fallon’s Fire Department in the top 15 percent of all fire departments in the state of Illinois.
As fire chief, Brent Saunders directed fire and rescue services for the citizens of O’Fallon, Shiloh, and rural areas of the O’Fallon, Shiloh Valley, Caseyville and St. Clair townships.
“It has been a tremendous honor to serve alongside the great firefighters of O’Fallon Fire Rescue,” said Fire Chief Brent Saunders. “I will never forget the memories I have made with the O’Fallon Fire Department and this community.”
In addition to the fire chief, there are three other full-time employees. The majority of O’Fallon’s fire suppression and rescue services are provided by 48 highly trained and dedicated volunteers distributed across four stations through the 44 square mile district.
The selection process for O’Fallon’s next fire chief will begin immediately.