Born, 1847 - came to California from Massachusetts in 1852
- Ran for the Volunteer Companies with Broderick Engine Co. No. 1 and Monumental Engine Co. No. 6
- Appointed to the Department as Foreman of Engine Co. No. 6, 1878
- Took a leave a absence, 1888
- Appointed District Engineer, March 25, 1888
- Appointed District Engineer, March 5, 1892
- Appointed Fireman of Engine Co. No. 17, 1893
- Appointed 1st Assistant Chief, March 30, 1893
- Appointed Acting Chief Engineer, June 15, 1906
- Served two terms as a State Senator
Highlights of his tenure as Chief Engineer:
During the four days of the Great Earthquake and Fire conflagration Chief Dougherty and Chief Shaughnessy shared the duties of the Chief Engineer.
After the Fire was extinguished by the Department, John Dougherty, being the First Assistant Chief, temporarily succeeded Chief Sullivan. But, being well along in years, he relinquished the reins to Patrick H. Shaughnessy on June 15, 1906 and then retired from the Department.