Percy Ashcraft, County Administrator
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Layman Named Caroline’s
First Fire-EMS Chief
David E. Layman has been named Caroline County’s first Fire-EMS Chief, announced County Administrator Percy C. Ashcraft.
Chief Layman, 45, is a 29-year veteran of fire service and comes to Caroline from the City of Newport News where he has been employed since 1988, and most recently as an Assistant Fire Chief. He will begin his new responsibilities in Caroline County on August 17. His annual salary will be $102,000.
“After conducting a national search, we are confident we landed the person who is best suited to lead us into a new era of fire and rescue services,” commented Ashcraft. “David has a thorough understanding of all phases of the operations. He has experienced high degrees of success at every level of his career.”
The Board of Supervisors voted earlier this year to reclassify the position of Director to Fire-EMS Chief. The Board approved a job description in the spring and the search was conducted. Over 70 applications were received from the national search.
The Board of Supervisors will begin consideration at its August 25 meeting of an ordinance that will formally create the Fire-EMS Chief’s position and codify the responsibilities. Since the mid 1990’s, the Fire and Rescue Department has been led by coordinators and directors.
“The Fire-EMS Chief will be responsible for oversight of all fire and rescue services in Caroline County,” Ashcraft added.
Ashcraft noted that the new chief will coordinate daily operations utilizing career and volunteer personnel. He will also be responsible for setting budgets, purchasing, scheduling of personnel to maintain coverage at 24-7 levels and recruitment and retaining of volunteers.
“I very much appreciate being given the opportunity to become the first Fire-EMS Chief for Caroline County. I am grateful for the overwhelming support and confidence of the Board of Supervisors and the County Administrator,” commented Layman. “I am honored to accept this position, and look forward to working together with both career and volunteer staff. It will be my goal to ensure that we work together to build upon the organizational foundation already established, while focusing on the future emergency services needs of the community.”
Chief Layman has served in both field operations and administrative management capacities. He entered the fire service in 1980 as a volunteer firefighter with the Kilmarnock Volunteer Fire Department in Lancaster County. His first career position was with the York County Department of Fire and Rescue as a Firefighter/Medic.
At Newport News, Chief Layman was instrumental in the development and implementation of the City and Regional Technical Rescue Program. He has a strong background in instructional methodology and has presented fire service courses on local, state, and national levels. He has been an Adjunct Instructor with the Virginia Department of Fire Programs (VDFP) since the late 1980’s. He is also an active member of the VDFP Heavy and Tactical Rescue Team and served a two year term as Team Captain. He has served as Vice President/Partner with PRISM Incorporated of Virginia, a private instructional firm offering fire, rescue, and emergency medical training to both the municipal and private sectors.
As a member with the FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Virginia Task Force II, Chief Layman served as a Rescue Team Manager. He has been deployed on a variety of large scale incidents, such as the Oklahoma City Bombing, Pentagon attack, and numerous natural disasters.
Chief Layman holds an Associates of Applied Science in Fire Science from Tidewater Community College, a Bachelor of Science in Fire Administration from Hampton University, and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Troy State University. He is also a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program. In 2005, Chief Layman received the designation of “Chief Fire Officer” by the Center of Public Safety Excellence.
He is a native of Virginia, and has been married to his wife, Wanda, for 14 years. They have two sons.
A public reception will be held at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, August 12 to welcome Chief Layman and his family to the community. This will precede the monthly meeting of the Emergency Services Commission which begins at 7 p.m.