The Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Safety, Stan Hilkey, announced Wednesday (March 16, 2016) the selection of Chief Mike Morgan of Colorado River Fire Rescue to become the next Director of the Division of Fire Prevention and Control (DFPC). On February 1, 2016, current DFPC Director, Paul Cooke, announced his plan to retire from the Colorado fire service, culminating a 41 year career in fire and emergency services.
"It is no easy task following someone with the reputation that Paul has, but I am confident that the selection process identified the best and most qualified applicant," said Executive Director Hilkey. He added that "Chief Morgan's well-rounded experience will serve the Division well and I am confident he will continue the great progress and legacy that Paul leaves."
Morgan is a Colorado native, born in Grand Junction and growing up on their family ranch he has spent most of his life in Garfield County. He began his fire service career in 1986 and has spent 30 years serving his community and the Colorado fireservice. Morgan now oversees Colorado River Fire Rescue, a full service fire department with over 100 career and volunteer members.
Morgan served for over 10 years on the Colorado State Fire Chiefs' Board of Directors (including two terms as President), has participated in several projects with the International Association of Fire Chief's, and has a long history of championing fire service-related issues. His work includes the ongoing collaborative efforts to unify Colorado's fire service and to promote local community interests directed towards the mission of "saving lives and property". Morgan is a recipient of the coveted John M. Buckman III Leadership Award, presented by the International Association of Fire Chief's.
Morgan has worked with the Division of Fire Prevention and Control, which in his opinion is the "focal point" for Colorado's fire prevention and suppression efforts, to find new and innovative ways to serve its customers. When asked what his desire is for his new position, Morgan stated "to represent all of Colorado's fire service, large and small, and to unify our voice to protect the residents, visitors, and responders of our great state".
Morgan is expected to assume his new responsibilities following a formal Transfer of Command Ceremony scheduled for April 22, 2016.