By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– San Bernardino County Fire Chief Mark Hartwig is pleased to announce the promotion of Jeff Birchfield from Battalion Chief to Division Chief, assigned to Division 1 (Valley Division) effective March 19. As Division Chief, Birchfield will take responsibility for rescue operations, fire and emergency medical response in the Valley region.
“I look forward to this next chapter, and am excited to be a part of the continual progression of this organization,” Division Chief Birchfield said.
Division Chief Birchfield began his fire service career in 1991 as a paid-call firefighter for Station 37 in Mountain View Acres. He worked as a seasonal firefighter for the Bureau of Land Management on helicopter crew 554 in 1992, and then worked as a firefighter at Ft. Irwin Fire Department prior to coming to County Fire as an Engineer.
In 2000, Birchfield accepted a position with Redondo Beach Fire Department as a firefighter/paramedic. In 2005 he returned to County Fire and spent the next eight years as a Captain assigned to various stations throughout the county including the Training Division. In 2013, Birchfield promoted to Battalion Chief assigned to Division 2 where he has helped secure additional grant funds for the department, performed as an expert witness on multiple cases involving vehicle collisions, and sits as Vice Chair on the FIRESCOPE Task Force.
Throughout his career, Division Chief Birchfield has actively pursued higher education and training. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Management from Azusa Pacific University and graduated from the County’s Management Leadership Academy in 2012.
Division 1 encompasses the western half of the San Bernardino Valley. The division has contiguous boundaries with the communities of San Bernardino, Colton, Rialto, Rancho Cucamonga and Ontario and shares its southern boundary with Riverside County. The Division is home to two of the County’s largest recreational venues, the California Speedway and the San Manuel Amphitheater. In addition, the communities of Devore, Lytle Creek, San Antonio Heights and Mt. Baldy are within or adjacent to the San Bernardino National Forest and offer major outdoor recreational activities both winter and summer.
Four major highways—Interstate 10, Interstate 15, Interstate 215 and Interstate 210—bisect the Division. The mouth of Cajon Pass is the collection point for three major rail lines, power supply lines and pipelines, all of which traverse through the Valley Division on their way to serve Los Angeles and points south.
The volume and complexity of responses has escalated annually for Division 1. County Fire personnel responded to 24,589 calls for service in Division 1 during the 2014-15 fiscal year, the most of any division.
Jeff resides in Upland with his wife and two children. He enjoys traveling, boating, and golf when he’s not watching his children at their events.