SOUTHINGTON — Fire department officials approved a slew of promotions this week, including moving Battalion Chief Glenn Dube to the role of deputy chief.
Dube has been the president of the firefighters’ union but resigned prior to his promotion since he’s now part of the department’s administration.
The deputy chief position, third in command of the department, was vacated when Scott Lee became assistant chief, second in command. The assistant chief position had been vacated when Eric Heath moved from assistant chief to chief in September.
The Board of Fire Commissioners approved Dube’s promotion to deputy chief and others to backfill open positions during Thursday night’s meeting. Promotions take effect on Feb. 19.
Mark Lajoie, board chairman, said the department was full of talented leaders.
“With all the movement we’ve had there, we still have a strong bench. Every time we do interviews, it’s a very difficult decision because there’s so much talent in that firehouse. It’s amazing,” he said. “They’re well trained, they’ve got good references.”Promoting from within
The fire board approved promotions for deputy chief, battalion chief, captain and lieutenant. It also approved the hiring of a firefighter to complete the backfilling.
Heath said it’s been a hectic nine months as the department dealt with retirements and role changes. He’s glad that all positions are now filled and that there were internal candidates for the jobs.
“It’s a goal of ours to continue to develop our people,” Heath said. “Eventually someone is going to need to take my spot or the assistant chief’s spot.”
Lee was also pleased with the promotions.
“I’m very excited to see where we go next,” he said. “It’s continually moving in a positive fashion.”New roles
The deputy chief position oversees training. Dube has been an adjunct instructor at the Connecticut Fire Academy since 2007 and said he’s looking forward to managing training for the department.
While the deputy chief position is a union role, Dube said he stepped down as a union leader although he’s still a member.
“It would be really hard for me to be all in as union president where at the same time I’m working daily with the administration as part of the administration,” he said.
Keith Glabeau, also a fire academy instructor, is taking Dube’s position as battalion chief.
“I couldn’t pick a better person to hand my shift off to,” Dube said.
Robert Moquin was promoted to captain to fill Glabeau’s spot. Mark Jurgilewicz was in turn promoted to lieutenant.
A new firefighter, John Nowik, was hired Thursday night. He works at the Cromwell Fire Department and is a Kensington fire volunteer.
“Some great guys got promoted last night,” Dube said. “There’s a line of leaders coming up behind them through the ranks.”
Southington has both career and volunteer firefighters. Dube praised the volunteer leaders as “outstanding.”
“When I say I’m proud of the organization, it’s all the way cross the board. It’s a really good fire department,” he said.