The Hamilton Fire Department reached within its ranks to select a new chief to replace the retiring Steve Dawson, as Deputy Chief Mark Mercer was tabbed to take on the role.
The move to hire Mercer, who will be paid $116,771 annually, was confirmed Monday afternoon by Scott Scrimizzi, the city’s executive director of Public Safety.
“Chief Mercer is very bright, works well with others, and I believe will bring even more technological advances to firefighting and emergency medical services in Hamilton. He is a skilled, intelligent public servant,” said Mayor Pat Moeller.
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Mercer had served as deputy chief since 2011 and graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a Bachelor of Science degree in Fire and Safety Engineering Technology. He is also a 1985 Hamilton Badin grad.
In his role as deputy chief, Mercer was assigned to the Training Bureau to oversee fire department training, personnel certifications, and special projects. He has been a part of the department for 29 years, receiving all of his training there.
“Chief Mercer is passionate about the department and the citizens they serve, he will do a great job,” he said.
“I want to say that I feel very confident that I am leaving the department in very good hands,” he said. “Mark is well-qualified and well-prepared. As I walk out the door, I am very hopeful for the future of the Hamilton Fire Department.”
Mercer will have a public swearing-in ceremony on Feb. 14, which is the next scheduled City Council meeting and will be sworn in by Moeller.