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Hinesville appoints Kitchings as fire chief

On Thursday, September 17, the Hinesville City Council voted to appoint Hinesville Fire Department Captain Robert Kitchings as the City’s new Fire Chief.

Kitchings has served 14 years with the Hinesville Fire Department, most recently as its Training Captain, and spent 10 years with the Georgia Department of Public Safety prior to that. His career is one of service and dedication to his position, regardless of rank or title. Chief Kitchings has a storied career leading into his appointment, with awards, accolades and extracurricular positions such as the Hinesville Fire Department 2014 Firefighter of the Year, an

appointment to the Curriculum Committee for the Georgia Fire Academy’s Basic Firefighter program, adjunct instructor for the Georgia and National Fire Academies, representative of Region 5 for the Georgia Firefighters Association – and he is a certified fire investigator.

Kitchings also holds memberships in his profession’s most prestigious organizations, including the Georgia Association of Fire Chiefs, Georgia Public Safety Fire Investigators Association, International Arson Investigators Association, and Georgia Arson Investigators Association.

When asked about what he plans to focus on during his tenure with the Hinesville Fire Department, Chief Kitchings said, “Our focus will be on matching the growth Hinesville Fire Department with the growth of the City of Hinesville. We are one of the fastest growing communities in the country, and we need a fire department that can keep up with that growth. We are going to continue to build on the legacy of Chief Lamar Cook and Deputy Chief Kris Johanson to move our department forward and meet the challenges of an ever changing fire service.”

The appointment took effect immediately following the meeting.

The search for a new Fire Chief spanned several months, interviews and candidates from all over the state.

“The Hinesville Fire Department has a history of excellence, both in its service to the community and the quality of its members. As the man who ensured the quality of our staff in recent years, we are thrilled to have Robert Kitchings step into the role of Fire Chief. His experience in the field and knowledge of the department – and the City itself – makes him a perfect candidate. I look forward to seeing how the Hinesville Fire Department continues to grow and evolve under his leadership in the coming years,” said Kenneth Howard, Hinesville City Manager.

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