Tim McConnell, who served as the New Orleans Fire Department's (NOFD) acting superintendent following the departure of Charles Parent, now takes the reins officially as the NOFD chief.
This morning, Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced McConnell's selection from among dozens of applicants and contenders. McConnell, a nearly 30-year veteran who joined the department in 1984, is NOFD's 11th superintendent. Parent led NOFD from 1982 until last month, when he took medical leave. McConnell inherits an NOFD with a lean budget (at $85 million) and a "redeployment plan" that will close houses at Arabella and in Gentilly.
Under his post-Katrina leadership, McConnell helped the NOFD restore 20 engine houses and helped raise more than $1 million and an additional $250,000 in construction materials. McConnell also served as the incident commander for Super Bowl XLVII (you likely have seen him and his mustache during frequent Super Bowl safety press conferences.)
"I am both humbled and honored that Mayor Landrieu has chosen me to lead this proud and storied fire department," McConnell said in a statement. "I could not be more proud than to have helped guide the City through Katrina and I look forward to the opportunity to lead the New Orleans Fire Department in becoming the model first responder agency for the 21st Century."
McConnell received the 2008 New Orleans Fire Department Superintendent’s Award and the 2007 Order of St. Louis Medal from Archbishop Alfred Hughes.