City Manager Rick Cole has chosen Bill Walker to serve as Fire Chief of the Santa Monica Fire Department. Walker, the current Fire Chief for the City of Alhambra, comes to Santa Monica with 21 years of public safety experience. He is the 2016 President of the Los Angeles Area Fire Chiefs Association and the 2015/16 President of the Foothill Fire Chiefs Association.
“We were searching for a dynamic leader for our fire department,” said Rick Cole, City Manager. “Chief Walker is that kind of leader and our city will benefit from his track record of community collaboration and commitment to service excellence. I am confident that he will be a great contributor to building a citywide culture of data-driven, results-oriented innovation.”
Prior to his five year tenure in Alhambra, Chief Walker was the Fire Chief for the City of Fountain Valley. His background includes expertise in the areas of administration, building and safety, Urban Search & Rescue, fire prevention, emergency medical services, staff training and community relations. In addition to holding the position of Fire Chief, Walker has served as Building Department Director, Battalion Chief, Captain, Fire Marshal and Paramedic. In Alhambra, he administered an annual budget of over $16 million, managed four fire stations and a fire training facility.
“I’m excited and honored to have the opportunity to join the Santa Monica Fire Department as Chief,” said Bill Walker. “Santa Monica is a remarkable and progressive place and I look forward to working with the men and women of the department to continue the long standing tradition of providing first-rate service to the community.”
Walker will assume his duties on May 2, 2016 with an annual salary of $257,988. As Chief, Walker will command 108 responders and 15 civilian staff, charged with preventing the loss of life, property and the environment from fires, medical and other natural or man-made disasters.
Chief Walker has a BA in Communications from USC. He is a member of the Alhambra Rotary, a member of the Alhambra Hospital Medical Center Governing Board and in 2014/15 was the President of the Board of Directors of the West San Gabriel Valley YMCA.