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Engler Becomes Lincoln’s Next Fire Chief

Dave Engler (Courtesy of LFR)

Lincoln, NE (April 19, 2021)  Lincoln no longer has an acting fire chief.  Dave Engler was been acting chief since December, and today, Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird asked the City Council to name him to the job permanently.

“It’s been very important over the past few months that we saw a leader for this Department.  To find someone who brings a special mix of talents and experience and leadership capability.  That mix is right here, in Chief Engler.”

Engler took over in an interim role after he retirement of former Chief Micheal DeSpain.

“He has, in his role as an acting chief, performed ably, and I am so confident in his ability to lead the Department forward” the Mayor said.

The new Chief said he has appreciated his nearly 25 year career with Lincoln Fire and Rescue.

“It’s just been an amazing career, and it’s an amazing City to work in, and it’s because of everyone in this City as well as our elected officials who support the things that we do.”

Engler has held a variety of positions, from Paramedic to Batallion Chief, but said he had not dreamed of becoming Chief until it was suggested to him by his predecessor, Chief DeSpain.  He said he is now very excited to lead the Department.

“Some people might say you achieved your dream” he said,  “but I never dreamed I would be in this position.”

The Mayor told the Council that Engler has actually expanded the role of Chief while acting Chief.

“He’s reached out to other Department leaders to look for innovative solutions that helped deliver services to our Community outside of their lanes.  Working with Parks.  Working with LTU.  Looking for those cross-departmental opportunities to provide effective service delivery.”

The Council approved Engler’s appointment on a 7-0 vote.

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