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Consolidated Fire hires new chief

Matthew Renda
Staff Writer

The Nevada County Consolidated Fire District has found its man.

Adolf Zubia, former fire chief from Las Cruces, N.M., was unanimously appointed as the new fire chief of Consolidated Fire during Thursday night’s regular meeting of the board.

The appointment brings to a close a lengthy stint in which the largest fire district in Nevada County was without a chief.

“There will be a major turnaround,” said Consolidated Fire Director Dave Hanson. “This is very exciting.”

Zubia said he was aware of the challenges the district has faced over the past year and a half but looked at it as an opportunity.

“I think it’s a great opportunity to come in here and help the transformation that’s going to take place,” he said.

Zubia is the chairman of the International Association of Fire Chiefs Fire and Life Safety Section and Chairman of the Fire Code Action Committee.

Zubia also served as the state fire marshal for the state of South Carolina.

He began his career as a firefighter in the Las Cruces Fire Department and worked his way through the ranks to become its chief from 2001 to 2009. His department consisted of 128 personnel with an annual operating budget of $12.5 million.

“We are extremely pleased to have found a chief of his caliber to lead the district,” said Chairman Warren Knox in a prepared statement.

“We are confident his proven experience, nationally recognized leadership qualities and ability to interact positively with not only our constituents but also elected officials throughout the county will be extremely positive for the district.”

Zubia signed a contract worth $145,000 annually, plus benefits.

Zubia was selected after two days of interviews conducted by two separate panels composed of Consolidated Fire board members, fire chiefs from the region, a Consolidated Fire representative, Grass Valley City Administrator Dan Holler, Grass Valley Fire Department Chief Tony Clarabut and Nevada City Mayor Sally Harris.

The panels selected the four final candidates and were unanimous in their top choice Knox said.

Zubia is tentatively scheduled to begin Aug. 4.

To contact Staff Writer Matthew Renda, email mrenda@theunion.com or 530-477-4239.

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