It was great to see that Washington Park, for the first time, has a woman serving as chief of the village’s fire department. Equally impressive is the fact that she’s volunteering her service, and that the department is now an all-volunteer department.
Mayor Rickie Thomas said the interim chief wanted a salary of $50,000 plus benefits, which the village simply couldn’t afford.
The new chief, Sharon Davis, said she’s working to “bring back pride and tradition to this fire department so the citizens can get and the department can provide better fire service.” The mayor said Davis’ volunteer service is “a great help to the village.”
The mayor also noted that some larger cities, such as O’Fallon and Fairview Heights, have mostly-volunteer departments. And we’ll note that there are towns across the region that have all-volunteer departments, made up of dedicated firefighters who provide excellent service.
In these times of tight tax dollars, communities must look at all options, including volunteers to help out. Often, there are people like Davis who are excited about serving their communities.