Elmwood Park promotes from within for fire chief
Elmwood Park Fire Chief Michael Ventura
Updated: November 19, 2012 2:28PM
ELMWOOD PARK — While the current fire chief plans to retire next month, the person he introduced to the profession will man his post.
Elmwood Park Mayor Peter Silvestri appointed Elmwood Park Deputy Fire Chief Michael Ventura to become the new fire chief on Monday.
Silvestri said Ventura knows the community and is detail oriented.
“His new service will be a great continuation of a great fire department,” he said.
Ventura will be sworn in as the new chief at the Nov. 5 board meeting. Elmwood Park Fire Chief Michael Marino’s resignation goes into effect Nov. 9. He plans to retire.
Ventura said Marino introduced the idea of becoming a firefighter to him.
“I started out as plumber and that’s when I met Mike Marino, who is the current chief,” he said. “He was the one that introduced me to the fire service. Ever since, I’ve had a real interest in it and helping people in their time of need.”
When his appointment was announced at Monday’s Village Board meeting, Ventura, 54, thanked the mayor and trustees for the opportunity. Ventura has been a firefighter for 30 years, working his way up the ranks, and has been deputy chief since 2009. He has lived in the village since 1972.
“I came on in 1982 as a paid on-call (firefighter),” he said. “It’s like a part-time and I did that for three years and got hired full-time in 1985.”
He said he’s excited about being chief and has a lot of ideas about the department’s future.
“One of my things is to continue extensive training for all of our membership,” he said. “Keep our guys ready to go.
“The fire service is an evolving thing,” he said. “New technologies are coming out. We’re looking at purchasing a new fire engine and replacing the one that we have that is well over 20 years old.”
Ventura said family and friends are excited about the appointment, including his wife Cindi Ventura.
“I am so proud of him,” she said. “Our whole family is thrilled. He’s a hard-working guy and deserves it.”