By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express
Oshawa Fire Services has a new man at the helm after the city announced it has hired Shane Caskanette as the newest fire chief.
A veteran of the industry with more than a quarter century of experience, Caskanette has spent time in many different aspects of municipal fire services. Starting his career in Woodstock, he worked his way through the ranks, holding such positions as the captain of the fire training division and the deputy fire chief. Most recently, Caskanette was the deputy fire chief for the Town of Richmond Hill.
Caskanette also has several educational accolades under his belt, including a certificate in labour law from Osgoode Hall Law School, master’s certificate in municipal leadership from the Schulich Executive Education Centre at York University and a bachelor’s degree in fire safety studies and public safety administration from the Justice Institute of British Columbia.
Speaking with The Oshawa Express, Caskanette says along with his experience, the success of the fire service is not just about him.
“It’s really not about the fire chief,” he says. “What really makes fire services exceptional are the people and the support it receives from council and our community.”
Prior to his first day on the job, Caskanette received a warm welcome from Oshawa council after the bylaw appointing him to his new position was carried unanimously.
“I’m sure our city will benefit greatly from the training and experience Chief Caskanette brings to this very important leadership position within our fire services,” states Councillor Bob Chapman in a news release.
After his first days on the job, Caskanette thanked deputy fire chief Steve Boyd and interim fire chief Derrick Clark for their assistance as he transitioned to his new role.
And for first impressions, Caskanette has a glowing commendation for the city.
“Oshawa fire services is rich in tradition and built on a solid foundation and they provide an excellent service to the community,” he said.