Fire Chief for Joplin, MO

  • City of Joplin, MO
  • Joplin, Missouri
  • Nov 13, 2021
Full Time Administration and Management Fire and EMS Public Safety Management, Mid to Senior Level
  • Salary: $72,000 - 108,000 USD
  • Negotiable/DOQ: Yes
  • Phone: 816.868.7042
  • Apply By: Nov 08, 2021




Are you seeking an amazing career opportunity in the fire and emergency services profession where you can make a difference by positively impacting the lives of others? The City of Joplin is seeking an experienced, visionary and strategic leader to serve as its next Fire Chief!    

Joplin, a city of 51,000 residents located in both Jasper County and northern Newton County, serves a region of over 400,000 and is the fifth largest metro area in the state of Missouri. Joplin’s daytime census grows to nearly 250,000 because of a large employment base. Joplin residents and businesses benefit from outstanding transportation infrastructure and assets such as the City operated Joplin Regional Airport, and a network of federal and state highways providing connections throughout the region. The public has access to excellent medical care with two regional hospitals: Mercy Hospital Joplin and Freeman Health System. The region is home to an outstanding array of educational opportunities with a variety of quality public and private schools. Elementary and secondary public education is provided by the Joplin R-VIII School District, serving more than 7,700 students in grades K-12 across 15 campuses. Private schools in the area include Thomas Jefferson Independent Day School, College Heights Christian School, and Joplin Area Catholic Schools (JACS) System. Joplin has a wide variety of higher education offerings, including Missouri Southern State University, Crowder Community College, and Ozark Christian College. The City is home to a new medical school, Kansas City-Joplin University Medicine & Bio-Sciences - the first new medical school built in Missouri in more than forty years. There are also colleges and universities nearby in the region, such as Pittsburg State University, in Pittsburg, Kansas, and Missouri State University, Drury College, and Evangel College in Springfield, Missouri. Joplin continues to aggressively rebuild following a devasting tornado the community experienced in 2011 that severely impacted the entire region. The City has viewed the recovery as an opportunity to reinvest in the community and the resilience and “can do” spirit of community leaders has inspired a rebirth and reinvestment that continues 10 years later after the tragic event.

Joplin is a “Home Rule” city and operates under the Council-Manager Form of government.  The Council consists of nine members, including the Mayor. Every two years the City Council selects one if its members to serve as Mayor, who chairs City Council meetings and serves as the spokesperson for the City Council. The Council appoints a City Manager to oversee all City operations that includes approximately 585 FTEs supported by a total FY 2021 combined funds budget of $113.8 million. Reporting directly to the City Manager, the Fire Chief oversees a fire and emergency services department with 128 full time employees (including emergency management) operating from six (6) stations supported by a $9 million annual budget. A seventh Fire Station is funded, and beginning and completing construction will be a priority. The Joplin Fire Department is a regional and State-wide leader in providing fire and emergency management and rescue services and is comprised of five (5) divisions: Administration, Operations, Prevention, Training, and Emergency Management. The Fire Department also provides fire and emergency services to the Joplin Regional Airport and possesses significant training and expertise in hazardous materials response.  

Job Description

The City is seeking a collaborative leader who is innovative and entrepreneurial in their approach to providing fire and emergency services to the community. The ideal candidate will be a team player that possesses exceptional communication, listening and presentation skills with an ability to connect with the employees of the Fire Department, other City departments and outside agencies, and engage with the community. Candidates should possess the ability to adapt to and accept change at a rapid pace while being respectful of Joplin’s organizational history and culture.  

Candidates should be experienced in managing a fire department budget and have a record of working effectively with unions and employee groups. The ideal candidate will be receptive to and seek input from both inside and outside the Department and be committed to employee and leadership development. The selected candidate must be skilled at employee recruitment and employee and leadership development within the Fire Department. 

Job Requirements

The minimum qualifications required to be selected as the next Fire Chief include: a bachelor’s degree in fire, business or public administration, or a related field from an accredited institution; 10 years of experience in the fire service; or an equivalent position of responsibility with another department or agency plus at least five (5) years’ at a supervisory or management level.  A Master’s degree in a related discipline is desired, but not required.  A valid driver’s license and successful completion of a pre-employment drug test is required.  The Fire Chief is not required to live within City limits but must reside within a 12-mile radius from City Hall.

The salary is negotiable and will be commensurate based on the selected candidate’s experience and qualifications, with a starting range of $72,000 - 108,000.  A generous benefits package is offered that includes health insurance, with single coverage paid by the City, dental and vision insurance, and paid vacation and sick leave. The selected candidate will be provided a vehicle and the City’s retirement plan is provided through the Local Government Employees Retirement System (LAGERS), at the L-11 level, with a five-year vesting requirement. A voluntary deferred compensation plan through ICMA is also available.  

Special Instructions

This position is open until filled; however, prospective candidates are encouraged to submit their applications by Monday, November 8, 2021 by submitting a cover letter and resume on-line at: Finalists should expect an open process and to interview before multiple panels of stakeholders. For more information, please contact Art Davis at, or 816.868.7042. More information about this outstanding community can be found at

Additional Information

Joplin is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).

Job Address

Joplin, Missouri United States View Map