Vancouver's fire chief and COVID-19 task-force chief to leave for Alberta

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      Vancouver’s fire chief and head of the city’s COVID-19 task force is departing for Alberta.

      Strathcona County Mayor Rod Frank announced on June 10 that Darrell Reid, who is the fire chief of Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services and Vancouver Emergency Management Agency (VEMA), has been appointed chief commissioner of Strathcona County, effective July 13.

      Reid also announced his resignation from his position on his social media on the same day.

      In his new role, Reid will be involved in developing and implementing all policies and programs, and advising council on legislation and municipal operations and providing information for council decision-making.

      Strathcona County, located east of Edmonton, has over 98,000 residents in Sherwood Park and adjacent rural areas, and is facing economic challenges related to COVID-19 and changes in the oil industry.

      The central Alberta municipality is where Reid’s family lives and where he served as fire chief for almost six years before he went on to become Ontario’s Heart and Stroke Foundation CEO and Toronto’s Deputy Fire Chief.

      Reid became Vancouver’s fire chief in May 2017 after replacing John McKearny, who retired after 37 years.

      Unfortunatelty on May 8, Reid’s work truck was broken into and his dress uniforms and medals were stolen.

      In March, Reid became the head of the Vancouver COVID-19 Task Force, reporting directly to city manager Sadhu Johnston, while Kiran Marohn became the acting fire chief.

      VEMA director Daniel Stevens, who worked with Reid throughout the pandemic, will lead the city's response to the pandemic. The COVID-19 Task Force covers the city's pandemic response, including operating emergency operations centre (which is in the city's longest-running activation), reducing the COVID-19 impact on the city, and preparing for recovery.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.