Fire Chief

$1 yearly
  • City of Iowa City, IA
  • Iowa City, IA, USA
  • Oct 05, 2021
Full time Fire & EMS

Job Description

Now Seeking

Fire Chief

The Community

Offering big-city amenities along with small-town hospitality, Iowa City has it all. Nestled in the heart of the Midwest in east central Iowa, it has long served as a hub for culture, education, variety, and fun. The City enjoys an extensive parks and recreation system that includes nearly 1,000 acres of prairie, wetlands and forested areas with almost every Iowa City resident living within ½ mile of public open space areas. Iowa City also features a vibrant, walkable downtown. In 2008 it was designated as the first UNESCO City of Literature, and remains one of just two cities in the United States to hold this honor.

Numerous professional publications consistently rank Iowa City as a highly favorable place to do business, a vibrant center for arts and culture, and a great place to retire where seniors can age successfully. In 2019 Iowa City was ranked by Livability as No. 4 of the Top 100 Places to Live, and No. 19 on Money’s Top 100 Best Places to Live. In 2018 the City was recognized by MSN Money as No. 7 of the Top 40 Cheap and Charming Places to Retire. Many other accolades can be viewed at

Iowa City is the home of the University of Iowa with Hawkeye athletics being a regional draw for college sports enthusiasts. Our community also offers excellent healthcare facilities, including the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Mercy Hospital, and the Iowa VA Medical Center. Additionally, the City is the location of numerous private employers such as ACT, Pearson, Procter & Gamble, Oral B, and many other smaller business and manufacturing firms.

The City’s fiscal year 2022 operating and capital budget totals $195 million. The primary revenue sources are property taxes, hotel/motel taxes, user fees, permits and licenses, and franchise fees. Iowa City has received a Moody’s Aaa credit rating for more than 40 years and has been recognized for its efforts in budget preparation and comprehensive annual financial reporting.

Our diverse and welcoming community, located along the banks of the Iowa River and south of the Coralville Reservoir, is home to more than 76,000 people, and is easily accessible via Interstate 80 and Highway 218. Iowa City is situated in the second-fastest growing county in Iowa, Johnson County, with a population of 142,000, and serves as county seat. Approximately 26 miles north is Cedar Rapids, serving a metropolitan area of 175,000. Several small rural towns are located throughout Johnson County. Iowa City also neighbors two bustling suburban communities, Coralville and North Liberty, and is near several other quickly-growing small cities. Explore the region and the unique attributes that make this our favorite place to be, at and

Responsive Government

Iowa City is governed by a 7-member city council elected to four-year overlapping terms, with four at-large members and three from districts. The Council selects the Mayor.   The City Council appoints the City Manager, City Clerk, and City Attorney for indefinite terms.  The Fire Chief is appointed by the City Manager and approved by the Civil Service Commission and the City Council. All other staff appointments throughout eight City Departments and oversight of the daily operations by more than 600 employees are the responsibility of the City Manager. The City’s most recent strategic plan challenged Iowa City to be a more inclusive, just, and sustainable community, and our City actions and operations are modeled to meet those goals.

Fire Chief Position

The Fire Chief directs the operational, financial, personnel, and policy activities of the department. The Fire Chief will be responsible for an annual operating budget of $9.2 million and a sworn staff of 63 employees. Organized staff are represented by IAFF Local #610.

The Iowa City Fire Department provides fire, medical, technical rescue, and hazardous materials emergency response in the incorporated area of Iowa City including the University of Iowa main campus. The department operates from four fire stations and staffs four engine companies, one rescue/truck company and a command vehicle. The department has attained reaccredited agency status through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International.

Essential Functions

Establishes all policies, procedures, and regulations for firefighting, emergency, operational, and prevention standards in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. Develops and recommends all fire code regulations to Council for adoption.

Performs short- and long-range planning regarding departmental operations with respect to personnel, apparatus, equipment, and emergency operations. Supervises and directs the implementation of such goals, objectives and plans.

Plans, develops, conducts, and supervises the operation of departmental in-service training of personnel. Plans and directs public education, fire prevention, and community risk reduction programs.

Performs various public relations functions to include contact with the media, public, private organizations, schools, area fire departments, and state and national organizations.

Prepares, coordinates, and monitors the annual budget and controls the expenditure of budgeted funds. Assists in the preparation of bids on major pieces of equipment and makes recommendations to the City Manager on Capital Improvement Program purchases regarding apparatus, equipment, advancements in technology, new stations, etc.

Supervises the inspections of buildings and other properties for fire hazards. Enforces fire prevention regulations and works to attain abatement of fire hazards.

Conducts briefings with chief officers to review daily work schedules and discuss staff activities.

Supervises the operations of the fire suppression program and coordinates activities with Johnson County fire officials. Supervises the operations of the emergency medical services program and coordinates activities with local ambulance services and hospitals.

Supervises the operations of the hazardous materials response and technical rescue programs and coordinates the activities with Johnson County officials.

Responds to major fire alarms and emergencies and exercises overall supervision at the scene.

Participates in the operations of the Joint Emergency Communications Center as a member of the User Advisory Committee.

Works with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in the investigation into cause, origin, and circumstances of fires.

Conducts self in a manner which promotes and supports diversity and inclusivity in the workplace and community.

Candidate Requirements

Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in business, public administration, or fire science from an institution accredited by a DOE recognized accreditation body required. Over seven years’ experience in fire and rescue management required. Valid Iowa Class D driver’s license with satisfactory driving record required within 60 days of appointment. Must be at least 18 years of age per Iowa Code 92.8. Must reside in the municipal limits of the City of Iowa City.

Master’s degree in public administration or a related field preferred. NFA Executive Fire Officer and CPC (Commission on Professional Credentialing) Chief Fire Officer Designation preferred.

Compensation and Benefits

Salary schedule. Starting salary to be negotiated. Position range of $100,276.80 - $158,912.00

Medical Insurance. Provided for employees through Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Employees contribute 10% of premium for coverage selected.

Dental Insurance. The City provides dental insurance for employees through Delta Dental. Employees have the option of purchasing family dental coverage.

Vision Insurance. The City makes available an optional vision plan for employees and family through Delta Vision. Coverage is paid fully by the employee.

Section 125 Plan. The City offers premium conversion and medical spending account, and dependent care spending accounts through a pre-tax Section 125 plan.

Life Insurance. The City provides life insurance coverage in an amount equal to annual salary.

Supplemental Life Insurance. Employees may purchase supplemental life insurance for themselves and their dependents.

Sick Leave. City employees accrue sick leave at the rate of one day per month, up to a total of 1440 hours.

Vacation. City employees accrue vacation at a rate of one day per month for the first five years of employment. Accrual rates increase every five years.

Paid Family and Parental Leave. City employees with at least two weeks of paid accrued leave are eligible for up to four weeks of paid leave at 70% with the option to supplement to 100% of pay after their first year of employment.

Holidays. City employees receive 11 holidays and one personal day each year.

Longevity Pay. Longevity pay of $325 annually is paid following five years of service. Longevity pay increases in five-year increments.

Deferred Compensation. Employees may voluntarily join a deferred compensation program which includes a post-tax Roth IRA option administered by the City.

Pension Plan. Municipal Fire and Police Retirement System of Iowa.

Application and Selection Process

City of Iowa City online application and resume must be submitted by November 12, 2021. The online application can be accessed at

Questions regarding this recruitment process may be directed to:
Human Resources
City of Iowa City
410 E. Washington Street
Iowa City, IA 52240
319-356-5020 or email

Selected candidates may be required to prepare or provide additional documentation to further assist in candidate screening. Must pass criminal background check.

The City of Iowa City is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is subject to the Iowa Smokefree Air Act.