Fire Administration

The Fire Administration (5101) is responsible for all operations of the agency. Headed by the Chief of Department, the duties of fire administration include preparation and control of the annual operating budget, administration of the fire data processing systems (NFIRS), recruitment and enlistment of new employees, the provision of in-service training and education, continued evaluation of the agency and its programs and planning and for future service needs, managing of the city’s Code Compliance Section,. This division also administers an efficient, ongoing program for the maintenance, retention, disbursement, preservation of incident reports and other agency records in accordance with the Administrative Code of the Florida Statutes.

2016-2017 Organizational Chart
2016-2017 Organizational Chart

The Fire Administration staff includes the Chief of Department, Deputy Fire Chief, Division Chief of Firefighter Health, Safety & Training, the Finance and Administration Section Chief and two Technical Assistants.

Strategic Plan

Since 1997, Winter Park Fire Rescue has benefited from having in place a community-driven strategic plan. Our current strategic plan was updated in 2015 and included participation from both internal and external stakeholders. The strategic plan created eight specific goals and related objectives directed towards the continuous improvement of the department. The department’s strategic plan has helped guide decisions, budget for staffing and equipment, and sustain the levels of service expected by the community.

If you are interested in participating in the next external stakeholder exercise please contact the department at Strategic planning is a critical part of our operation. We need and desire your comments, suggestions, and ideas.

Standards of Cover

In 2001 the City Commission adopted the city’s first emergency services Standards of Cover (SOC). An SOC sets in place an agreed upon level of performance and outcomes for the emergency services provided by the fire department. The agency’s levels of performance are based on several key points; a structured assessment of total community risk, a minimal level of personnel and equipment to address those critical tasks needed to be accomplished at any given emergency, and what are the anticipated outcomes of these events based on the assumptions if enough personnel arrive to a specific risk with enough equipment to stop the loss and thus changing the outcomes of the events in a positive way. The most current agreed upon SOC was passed by the City Commission in January 2016. Please find linked here a copy of the agency’s current SOC document.

James E. White
James E. White
Chief of Department

Chief White began working as a volunteer firefighter in his hometown of Arlington, Virginia from 1979-1982. In January 1983, he began his career as a professional firefighter in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina where he rose through the ranks of the agency serving as Firefighter, Engineer, Lieutenant, and finally serving as Captain of the Fire Training and Public Education Division before moving to Winter Park in July 1992 and assuming the role as the agency’s Deputy Fire Chief.

From 1992 until his selection as the Chief of Department in October 2002, White moved the agency into a new era of community and customer service. Significant accomplishments during this period include the development of the agency’s first Strategic Plan and Standard of Cover, the move to full-service EMS patient transport services, and the agency’s first award of International Accreditation. During this period the city also implemented one of the area’s first 800 MHz trunked radio systems and established a presence in the regions homeland domestic security programs as well as the city’s emergency management and moved to assume response responsibility.

In October 2002 White was selected as the agency’s Chief of Department. Continued growth in the agency included the establishing of one of the area’s first EMS on-duty Supervisors, additional patient transport capabilities, a reduced ISO rating from the previous Class 3 to 2 and eventually to Class 1 status in 2012. In 2014 Winter Park Fire Rescue became one of only three agencies in the United States to have achieved ISO 1, and both Fire and Ambulance Services Accreditation.

Chief White has continued to set the bar high for Winter Park Fire Rescue bringing high-caliber recruits to the agency. White led the regions first real examination of the issues of diversity within the local fire academies when the number of minority candidates failed to provide each agency with firefighters who reflected our community. In support of firefighter training, Chief White has served on the Board of Governors of the Central Florida Fire Academy and the Central Florida Fire Consortium for more than 20 years.

In service to others Chief White has been the President of the Central Florida Fire Chief’s Association since 2007 and serves on the Board of Directors for the non-profit organization Operation American Dream. He has been recognized for his contributions to the fire and emergency services with the 2013 Fire Service Information Liaison Officer (ILO) of the Year, the recipient of the 2015 Ronny Jack Coleman Leadership Legacy Award from the Commission on Professional Credentialing, the 2014 Florida Fire Chief of the Year awarded by the Florida Fire Chiefs Association, and was a nominee for the 2015 Fire Chief of the Year from the International Association of Fire Chiefs. Chief White is a graduate of Leadership Winter Park Class VIII and the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program.

Chief White holds and Associate degree in Fire Science Technology, a Bachelors Degree Public Administration, and holds Member status with the Institute of Fire Engineers. Jim is an instructor at the National Fire Academy in Emmittsburg, Maryland and teaches for the Center for Public Safety Excellence.

Jim is a member of the Winter Park Rotary Club and lives in Orlando with his wife, Kristi. The White’s have two daughters; Morgan who lives in Gainesville, Florida and is a graduate of the University of Florida and Kristen who lives in Greenville, South Carolina and is a graduate of Clemson University. In his spare time, Jim is a professional baseball umpire working games at the local and regional levels and is a member of the Little League World Series Umpire Alumni Association selected to work the games in 2012.

Pat McCabe
Pat McCabe
Deputy Chief – Operations

Patrick “Pat” McCabe has been serving the citizens of Winter Park since 1985. He has been an officer since 1995, and was a Paramedic before that. Pat is currently participating in the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer Program (EFO).

Pat is married to Cheryl, and has two sons attending Valencia Community College.

Jimm Walsh
Jimm Walsh, CFO
Division Chief

Jimm began his career with the Winter Park Fire Rescue Department in January 1998. Originally serving as a Fire Inspector, he has since risen through the ranks of Firefighter, Engineer, Captain, and into his current position as Division Chief.

Chief Walsh holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration from the University of Central Florida, where he is currently pursuing a Masters in Public Administration. He is in his final year of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer (EFO) Program, and has been credentialed by the Commission for Public Safety Excellence as a Chief Fire Officer (CFO.)

Jimm is a member of an Urban Search and Rescue Team (FL-TF4) and the State of Florida Region 5 Incident Management Team. He has instructed numerous classes across the nation and has served as the Fire Officer Program Manager and Special Operations & Truck Company Instructor for the Central Florida Fire Academy.