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City of Palm Bay Announces New Fire Chief

Post Date:08/14/2017 9:50 AM

The City of Palm Bay is pleased to announce the selection of its new Fire Chief, Russell “Rusty” Nail.  After a comprehensive selection process Nail was chosen from the best and brightest in the fire rescue field. 

“As a previous Palm Bay Fire Rescue member, his passion and empathy to serve the community as the Fire Chief was evident throughout the selection process, and he was unanimously recommended by the selection panel,” said City Manager Gregg Lynk. 

Nail is set to be sworn in at the Palm Bay City Council meeting on Tuesday, August 15th, 2017.  The new Fire Chief will replace departing Chief James Stables, who has accepted a position as the Fire Chief in Johnson City Tennessee. 

“This is a dream come true for me,” said Nail.  “I look forward to leading the organization and carrying on the initiatives that have been set in motion by Chief Stables and our Fire Administration.” 

About Chief 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.

 Chief Nail-0851


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