Tulare County Appoints New Fire Chief

Tulare County Appoints New Fire Chief

The Tulare County Board of Supervisors announced on Tuesday, January 5, 2016 that Charles Norman has been hired as the new chief of the Tulare County Fire Department. 

Norman has over 30 years of experience in fire service.  He began his career in 1985 as a Seasonal Firefighter with CAL Fire while also serving as a Reserve Firefighter with the Visalia Fire Department.  Norman served with the Kings County Sheriff’s Department from 1987-1989 and the Kings County Fire Department from 1989-1992.  In January of 1992 he was hired as a Firefighter with the City of Visalia and promoted through the ranks to the position of Battalion Chief.  He has served in the capacity of Fire Marshal, Admin/Training Chief, and Operations Chief. He came to Tulare County in May of 2014 when he was hired on as the Emergency Services Division Chief with the Fire Department. 

Charles Norman holds a degree in Fire Science from the College of Sequoias and majored in Organizational Leadership at Chapman University, he has earned his State Fire Marshal certification as a Fire Officer, Chief Officer, Hazardous Materials Specialist, Fire Investigator and Fire Instructor, and has extensive training in Emergency Medical Services, Hazardous Materials and Fire Investigation. 

The decision to appoint Norman came easily due to his proven leadership and was a unanimous vote by the Board of Supervisors stated Board of Supervisors Chairman Mike Ennis.   “Charles has already shown to be a tremendous asset to our Fire Department,” said Ennis, “we are confident that with his great leadership skills and personality he will take the Tulare County Fire Department to the next level.” 

Norman has taught in both the College of the Sequoias and Fresno City College Fire Science Programs.  He also previously served as a Councilman for the City of Exeter, Tulare County Planning Commissioner, Exeter High School Board of Trustees, and on the Exeter Ambulance District Board of Directors.  He has been married to wife Madaline for 27 years and they have three children, Nate (22), Kirby (19), and Jake (18).

“As a lifelong Tulare County resident I am humbled to be named the next Tulare County Fire Chief, this is truly an honor,” shared Norman, “I look forward to the continuation of providing the highest quality of emergency service and customer care available to our citizens.”

Norman will replace Joe Garcia, who will retire January 8 after 42 years in fire service. He will officially start his Fire Chief duties on January 11 and will earn $125,000 annually.