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Chief Engineers - Chiefs of Department:

Francis P. Kelly
Francis P. Kelly
Chief of Department
1953-56

  • Appointed to the Department, November 1, 1909, age 22, occupation, Plumber
    • Assignments as a fireman: Truck Co No. 5, 1910, Truck Co. No. 4,
  • Appointed Chief's Operator, April 1, 1911
    • Assigned to District 3
  • Appointed Lieutenant, August 21, 1920
    • Assigned to Truck Co. No. 3
  • Appointed Fire Marshal, December 25, 1926
  • Appointed the first Chief of the Division of Fire Prevention & Investigation, 1937
  • Appointed Chief of Department, August 21, 1953
  • Restored to former rank of Chief of the Division of Fire Prevention and Investigation, December 16, 1956
  • Retired, April 1, 1957
  • Died - December 1957
Highlights of his tenure as Chief of Department:
  • The building of the new combined Drill Tower and Fire College was completed
  • 1956, the division of the firefighting companies was changed to three shifts, each working twenty-four consecutive hours on duty, changing from 10 hour days and 14 hour night shifts

Francis P. Kelly, Chief Walsh's successor, was appointed Chief of Department on August 21, 1953. He had served as Chief of the Division of Fire Prevention & Investigation since the position had been created by ordinance in 1937. Prior to that, he had held the office of Fire Marshal for ten years.

Although Chief Kelly served as Chief of Department for only three years, he made certain that the steady progress of the building program was maintained. Of the fifteen building projects completed during his tenure, the most important by far was the new combined Drill Tower and Fire College.

During Chief Kelly's last year in office, the most notable event was the change in working hours of the membership. In conformity with a charter revision, the Chief recommended for Commission approval, the division of the firefighting companies into three shifts, each to work twenty-four consecutive hours on duty. The recommendation was approved and the new system went into effect on March 12, 1956, establishing the basic work schedule which is still in effect today.

In the latter part of the year, Chief Kelly requested abridgment of his leave from his former position. Effective December 16, 1956, he was restored to his former rank of Chief of the Division of Fire Prevention and Investigation, retiring on April 1, 1957.