Government Spotlight

New fire/rescue chief takes over in New Gloucester

Jon Kiernan replaces Toby Martin, who abruptly resigned in December.

| Emily Bader, Lakes Region Weekly |

New Gloucester’s new fire/rescue chief, Jon Kiernan, started work last month, the same day he arrived in town by way of Oklahoma.

The 19-year veteran of the profession took over the department some eight weeks after former chief Toby Martin’s sudden resignation and departure. Martin’s short tenure was marked by high turnover within the department, including seven members’ resignations during his first year on the job.

Personnel interviewed said they are hoping Kiernan will bring strong leadership skills to the job.

Kiernan most recently served as the fire chief and emergency manager for the Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma, a federally recognized tribe of about 800 enrolled members based in the city of Perkins. He spent most of his career at the fire department in Enid, Oklahoma, a town of about 50,000 in the north central part of the state. There, he worked his way up from firefighter to captain and then training chief, before leaving in 2015 to work with his sons for a year.

“I’d lived in Oklahoma and been in the fire service for 20-some years,” but always wanted to come out to the East Coast, Kiernan said. When the job in New Gloucester popped up, he said “it was time for a start in a new place and try something different.” Keep reading