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Botetourt County Appoints Deputy Chief
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By Member Jason Ferguson
October 3, 2019

Fincastle, VA – Following a four-month, nationwide search, Botetourt County Fire & EMS Chief Jason Ferguson has appointed Jeff Powell as the Department’s Deputy Chief. Powell currently serves as a flight paramedic at VCU Health and has over 23 years of experience in fire and emergency services. In this role, Powell will serve as second-in-command of the County’s combination fire and EMS system.

“It is an honor to have been selected, and I am sincerely thankful for the privilege to soon serve as Deputy Chief,” said Powell. “I am looking forward to working together with the men and women of Botetourt County Fire & EMS to further strengthen the Department and the community.”

Powell was born and raised in Martinsville, where he developed his passion for public service as the son of a Martinsville firefighter. At age 14, he joined the ranks as an Explorer with the Martinsville Fire Department. During high school, he joined the Bassett Volunteer Rescue Squad and served as a Junior Squad Captain and led their EMS competition team. Powell also served terms as Vice President and President of the Virginia Association of Junior Volunteer Rescue Squads.

Upon moving to Richmond for college, Powell volunteered in Hanover County with both the Eastern Hanover Volunteer Fire Department and the East Hanover Rescue Squad. After college, he began his career service with the Henrico County Division of Fire, where he served in various capacities, including: Firefighter/Paramedic, Lieutenant, Accreditation Manager, Captain of Planning and Information Technology, Station Captain, Battalion Chief for both Administration and Operations, Executive Officer to the Chief, and Assistant Chief of Training & Professional Development.

Throughout his career in the Richmond area, Powell has served in numerous capacities, including: instructor for the Virginia Department of Emergency Management Hazardous Materials program, clinical instructor for the VCU Special Operations Combat Medic program, and peer assessor for the Commission on Fire Accreditation International.

“I am thrilled that we have been able to find someone with the experience, education, and personality that will meld into our leadership team and bring new perspectives. Powell has a vast amount of experience and has been actively involved in so many things that will bring new ideas to our team,” said Chief Ferguson.

Powell has an associate’s degree in fire science from Reynolds Community College, a bachelor’s degree in health sciences from George Washington University, and a master’s degree in public administration from Virginia Tech. He is also a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program. In addition, Powell is a graduate of the Virginia Chief Officer Academy and served for two years as the Academy Coordinator.

Powell will begin his service with Botetourt County on November 1. A swearing in ceremony and reception is being planned for later in November. He and his wife Claire will be moving to the area in the coming month.

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