Fire Chief Allen Shelton Announces Retirement
After a 44-year career, 37 of which serving as fire chief, Allen Shelton has announced his retirement from the City of Garden City effective July 1, 2019.
“I am very grateful and honored to have had the opportunity to serve this department and community for the past forty-four years. I am looking forward to having more time with my family, friends, travel and pursuing my interest in our community and faith-based projects. Garden City is a great place to work and live.”
Before being appointed the first career Fire Chief for the Garden City Fire Department in 1984, Shelton served the Garden City Fire Department in the capacities of Volunteer Firefighter, Volunteer Assistant Chief and Volunteer Fire Chief for the all-volunteer department.
During his time as Fire Chief, the department has grown from one full-time employee to a total of 38 paid employees, including three Battalion Chiefs, a Fire Marshal, six Lieutenants, 26 Firefighters, and an Administrative Assistant. The department currently makes use of two stations, and plans are underway for a third station to tentatively be opened in 2024. During his career, he has been a member on numerous committees and associations as well as serving on various boards. In October 2018, Chief Shelton was named Fire Chief of the Year by the Kansas State Association of Fire Chiefs.
“It’s hard to imagine a Garden City Fire Department without Chief Shelton. Chief has devoted his entire professional career to transforming a volunteer fire department into a predominantly full-time department that has the personnel, equipment, and training capable of serving a growing city,” remarked City Manager Matt Allen. “Chief’s leadership in the partnership with Garden City Community College to enhance their Fire Science curriculum and his commitment to providing top quality technical and leadership training to department staff will continue to benefit the department and the City long after his retirement.”
A search for the next Fire Chief will be conducted this summer.