Command Staff

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Chief Nail

Fire Chief Rusty Nail

Palm Bay Fire Chief Rusty Nail has over 25 years of Fire Service experience.  After volunteering with Brevard County Fire for a year, Nail began his professional career with the City of Palm Bay before joining the City of Orlando Fire Department, serving there for over 20 years.  Throughout his career, Nail has moved through all ranks including: Firefighter, Driver/Engineer, Lieutenant, District Chief, Assistant/Battalion Chief, Deputy Chief and now ultimately Fire Chief. Chief Nail has served in all areas of the Fire Services including: Operations, Administration, Training, Fire Prevention, Emergency Medical Services, Communications, Emergency Management, Public Education and Community Outreach. 

Rusty graduated with honors from Eastern Florida State College with both Associate of Science and Arts degrees and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Fire and Emergency Services Management from the University of Florida. He is a credentialed Chief Fire Officer through the Center for Public Safety Excellence, has an Executive Fire Officer certification, and completed the Emergency Services Leadership Institute through the Florida Fire Chiefs Association. 

As a Chief Officer with the Orlando Fire Department, he acquired extensive experience commanding or participating on all types of hazardous incidents. Experience of note includes the Gateway Center high-rise active shooter incident, downtown Pine Street building fire, 1994 Palm Bay brush fires, and being specifically reassigned to HazMat1 after the 9/11 attacks to assist with the large amount of anthrax calls the City or Orlando was receiving.  Nail is also a proud member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (EFO section), the Florida Fire Chiefs Association, and the Space Coast Fire Chiefs Association. Through these professional affiliations, he promotes best practice industry standards and actively supports the safety and welfare of the first responders that selflessly risk their lives for their citizens.


Battalion Chief GianantonioBattalion Chief Anthony Gianantonio

Battalion Chief Gianantonio is a 2nd generation firefighter following in his father’s footsteps to be part of the best profession.  His family moved to Palm Bay in 1981 where he has resided and attended school.  In 1992, after graduation from Palm bay High School, BC Gianantonio began his fire service career by volunteering at Malabar Fire Department.  After extensive training and certification, BC Gianantonio was hired by Palm Bay Fire Rescue in October of 1995.  Throughout his career in Palm Bay, BC Gianantonio has held every position in the department.  He was promoted to Battalion Chief in August of 2015.  His background is extensive in training and development of firefighting personnel and is an adjunct instructor at the local fire academy at Eastern Florida State College.  He has a Masters in Executive Fire Officer Leadership from Waldorf University and is a designated Fire Officer by the Commission for Professional Credentialing.  His 22 years of experience in Palm Bay has been beneficial to help train new hires and those seeking to advance within the department.  He is currently an Instructor III with the State of Florida and a Peer Assessor for departments nationwide through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International. 


Battalion Chief Gaius HallBattalion Chief Gaius Hall

As a proud member of  Palm Bay Fire-Rescue since 1989, Gaius Hall has served in the positions of Firefighter/ Paramedic, Driver/Engineer, Lieutenant, District Chief, and is currently serving as a Battalion Chief of Operations. Throughout the course of his career Chief Hall has served as a SWAT Medic, and as a member of the Special Response, Dive-Rescue, and USAR teams with Palm Bay Fire-Rescue. 

Educational background includes graduation from Eastern Florida State College with Associates of Science degrees in both Emergency Medical Services and Nursing. Chief Hall earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from the University of West Florida, and holds numerous certifications related to the Fire-Rescue profession. 



Battalion Chief Harrell

Battalion Chief Gene Harrell

Battalion Chief Harrell has been serving with Palm Bay Fire-Rescue since 2000, holding the positions of training section commander and most recently, battalion chief for C-Shift.
In addition to managing the daily operations of C-Shift, Battalion Chief Harrell is responsible for coordinating the emergency medical services program for the fire-rescue department.
Battalion Chief Harrell began his firefighting career with Melbourne Fire Department in 1974, leaving in 1975 for Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Fire Department, where he remained for 23 years, receiving several promotions, and retiring as an assistant chief. Battalion Chief Harrell holds an associate’s Degree and various professional certifications in the fire-rescue field.