(Press Release) On August 16th, Clovis Fire will welcome a returning Clovis Fire Department veteran as Deputy Chief and newly promoted Battalion Chief. Mike Despain joins the Clovis Fire as Deputy Fire Chief of the Emergency Services Bureau. Deputy Chief Despain comes to Clovis from the City of Fresno Fire Department having served since 2006 with his final position being that of Interim Fire Chief. Chief Despain brings over 28 years of operational experience to the position.
Deputy Chief Despain’s background provides Clovis a solid foundation including experience in Operations, Fire Prevention, Training and Investigations. In addition to serving the community, Deputy Chief Despain has served as a member of the Congressional Fire Services Institute, President of the Central Valley Burn Aware, and Center for Public Safety Excellence Peer Assessor.
Deputy Chief Despain graduated from National University with a Masters Degree in Human Resource Management. He is certified by the State Fire Marshal as Chief Officer, Master Instructor, and is a Certified Fire Officer. Combining his operational experience and educational background, Deputy Chief Despain has served as an adjunct instructor for Fresno City College where he is able to mentor future generations of fire service personnel.
As a Clovis resident, Deputy Chief Despain is looking forward to returning to the Clovis Fire Department team and continuing to move the department forward.
Battalion Chief, Jim Damico has served 13 years with the Clovis Fire Department having been promoted from Captain. Battalion Chief Damico started with Clovis in 1999 as a Firefighter coming from Kings County where he served as a Fire Apparatus Engineer. During his time with Clovis, Battalion Chief Damico has served as Team Leader for the Hazardous Materials Team, member of the Technical Rescue Team and Chairperson of the Apparatus Committee. In each of these roles, he was instrumental in creating budget efficiencies and improving training that translated into improved service to the community. Battalion Chief Damico has also served as the Clovis Fire Training Officer where he managed daily training, testing for all ranks and maintained State certifications for department personnel.
Concurrent with his operational commitments, Battalion Chief Damico completed his B.S. degree in Fire Administration and most recently received his Master’s degree in Emergency Services Management from Columbia Southern University. Complimenting his formal education, he is a California State Fire Marshal Certified Instructor, Hazardous Materials Specialist and Chief Officer certification.
Battalion Chief Damico brings both knowledge and passion for the fire service to the position. Actively serving as a Fire Academy instructor at both the College of Sequoias and Fresno City College, his students receive not only the fundamentals but are encouraged to look for ways they can improve service to the community. Outside of his professional activities, Battalion Chief Damico has volunteered his time as a participant with Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation, Clovis Fire Explorer Advisor and Battle of the Badges Blood Drive.
As the youngest member of the Command Team, Jim is a welcome addition who brings a new set of ideas and vision to the department.