Last night the Cosumnes Fire Department welcomed a new fire chief. Mike McLaughlin takes over for retiring Chief Tracey Hansen, who served as Chief for 7 years. Hansen began her career in public service in 1990 and in the fire service when she first joined the then-Elk Grove Fire Department in 1993. She has held the positions of Firefighter, Engineer, Captain, Battalion Chief, and Deputy Chief prior to being named Fire Chief in June 2010. Hansen was named Fire Chief of the Year by the California Fire Chiefs Association in October 2016.
McLaughlin is a 29-year veteran of the fire service who has served as Deputy Fire Chief for the Cosumnes Fire Department since 2014, where he has been responsible for all emergency operations.
McLaughlin will oversee the Cosumnes Fire Department’s $50 million budget and 183 employees in eight fire stations serving the cities of Elk Grove and Galt, and protecting more than 157-square miles of south Sacramento County. Operations include fire suppression, rescue, prevention, public education and emergency medical services.
McLaughlin began his career in the fire service in 1988 as a reserve firefighter in Contra Costa County. He worked as an EMT with Regional Ambulance in Oakland and as a firefighter/paramedic with the South Lake County Fire Protection District before joining the fire department of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. At Lawrence Livermore, McLaughlin served in a variety of roles from 1993 to 2010, eventually serving as Assistant Fire Chief. He later worked at the City of Merced Fire Department, eventually serving as its Fire Chief from 2011 to 2014 prior to joining Cosumnes Fire Department.
“I am honored to be appointed as Fire Chief for Cosumnes Fire,” said McLaughlin in an earlier press release announcing his appointment. “My highest priority will be continuing the exemplary leadership of Chief Hansen and supporting our dedicated front-line emergency responders, Fire Prevention staff, and support personnel to keep our community safe.”
The Department also celebrated eight additional fire personnel promotions at last night’s ceremony, including: Paul Zehnder, Deputy Chief of Administration and Support Services, Josh Freeman and Rick Clarke (Battalion Chiefs), John Nguyen, Dustin Hanna and Matt DeMarco (Captains), and Brian Flynn and Nick Flores (Engineers).
Photos courtesy of Michelle Orrock