Bangor Fire Chief Tom Higgins was named Fire Chief of the Year by the Maine Fire Chiefs’ Association at a Wednesday ceremony in Augusta.
A number of Chief Higgins’ achievements were cited in the award. Highlighted among them was the leadership Higgins exhibited during the wind storm in late October 2017, which knocked out power to the majority of the city, with some areas not getting electricity back for more than a week. In February, Higgins testified on behalf of the city and fire department on the response of Emera during the storm, resulting in new statewide protocols regarding major emergencies involving public utilities.
Also cited was Higgins’ work to make a number of positive changes for the city, including citywide safety inspections of rental units, advocacy for new and upgraded fire and EMT vehicles, safety equipment and training, improvements at Bangor International Airport, and a grant for five-year funding for four new firefighter and EMT positions.
Higgins, a Bangor native and graduate of Hermon High School, was appointed Bangor fire chief in January 2015 after 24 years with the Bangor Fire Department. He started as a firefighter and moved through the ranks until most recently becoming an assistant fire chief, then fire chief. Prior to joining the BFD, Higgins spent six years as chief of the Hermon Fire Department.
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