After a national search, County Manager Mark Schwartz has selected Acting Assistant Chief James Bonzano to be Arlington’s new permanent chief, effective May 8.
“Chief Bonzano brings a wealth of experience to this position, as well as deep ties to the Arlington community and Fire Department,” Schwartz said in a statement (below). “Over the last three decades, he has been committed to being a strong and progressive leader and I am thrilled that he will continue to do so as our new Fire Chief.”
Bonzano’s career with ACFD has included serving as the Fire/EMS branch director following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attack on the Pentagon.
Arlington has not had a permanent fire chief since last September, when Chief James Schwartz was appointed deputy county manager.
The full county press release on Bonzano’s appointment:
County Manager Mark Schwartz has named James Bonzano Arlington County Fire Chief, after an extensive national search. Chief Bonzano joined the ACFD in 1984, and has worked in a multitude of positions in his 31 years with the department, most recently serving as Acting Assistant Chief. Over the course of his career he has led and served in nearly every section of the fire department, including time as South Deputy Chief, Personnel Services Section Chief and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Battalion Chief. Chief Bonzano will begin his new position on May 8.
“Chief Bonzano brings a wealth of experience to this position, as well as deep ties to the Arlington community and Fire Department,” said Schwartz. “Over the last three decades, he has been committed to being a strong and progressive leader and I am thrilled that he will continue to do so as our new Fire Chief.”
Chief Bonzano has worked to create positive and lasting partnerships with both the community and regional fire prevention and EMS programs. He serves on committees for both the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments and the Northern Virginia Chiefs Committee, and is a well-known and respected member of the public safety community.
“I am honored to work alongside the great men and women of the ACFD,” said Bonzano. “I was born here in Arlington, and I feel privileged to continue to serve this community as Fire Chief. I am looking forward to the great things I know we will accomplish together.”
Chief Bonzano received his Master’s degree from Marymount University in Organizational Leadership and Innovation, and his Bachelor’s degree in Health Science from Old Dominion University. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees at Dominion Hospital and as a Board Member for the Northern Virginia Community College EMS Program.
After the jump, Schwartz’s memo to county employees.
I am happy to announce that after an extensive search, I am appointing James Bonzano as the new Arlington County Fire Chief. Chief Bonzano has been with ACFD for 31 years, and will bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the position of Fire Chief. Over the years he has served in many capacities within the ACFD, and I know that this breadth of experience will serve him well in this new leadership position.
Many of you have worked with Chief Bonzano over the years and know that he is a highly qualified and respected member of both the ACFD and the public safety community. I am looking forward to continuing the great work that the ACFD does each and every day for our community, as well as exploring new ideas together.
I would also like to thank Joe Reshetar for his service as Acting Fire Chief over the last eight months. I am grateful for his leadership during this time of transition. Chief Bonzano will begin his new position on May 8, and I hope you will join me in welcoming and supporting him.
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The Arlington-Aachen High School exchange is returning this summer and currently accepting applicants.
The sister-city partnership started in 1993 by the Arlington Sister Cities Association, which seeks to promote Arlington’s international profile through a variety of exchanges in education, commerce, culture and the arts. The exchange, scheduled June 17th to July 4th, includes a two-week homestay in Aachen plus three days in Berlin. Knowledge of the German language is not required for the trip.
Former participants have this to say:
_”The Aachen exchange was an eye-opening experience where I was fully immersed in the life of a German student. I loved biking through the countryside to Belgium, having gelato and picnics in the town square, and hanging out with my German host student’s friends. My first time out of the country, the Aachen exchange taught me to keep an open mind, because you never know what could be a life changing experience.” – Kelly M._
Learn about the new assessment of Arlington’s urban tree canopy and the many ecological and social benefits trees provide. Staff from the Green Infrastructure Center (GIC) will share study results and compare canopy cover for different areas of Arlington.The webinar will include assessments of ecosystem services such as stormwater mitigation, air quality, carbon uptake, and urban heat islands. For background on Arlington trees see the “Tree Benefits: Growing Arlington’s Urban Forest” presentation at http://www.gicinc.org/PDFs/Presentation_TreeBenefits_Arlington.pdf.
Please register in advance to assure your place at the webinar, https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/29543206508863839.
About the Arlington County Civic Federation: The Arlington County Civic Federation (“ACCF”) is a not-for-profit corporation which provides a forum for civic groups to discuss, debate, inform, advocate and provide oversight on important community issues, on a non-partisan basis. Its members include over ninety civic groups representing a broad cross-section of the community. Communications, resolutions and feedback are regularly provided to the Arlington County Government.
The next meeting is on Tuesday, February 21,2023 at 7 pm. This meeting is open to the public and will be hybrid, in-person and virtually through Zoom. Part of the agenda will be a discussion and vote on a resolution “To Restore Public Confidence in Arlington County’s Governance”. For more information on ACCF and this meeting, go to https://www.civfed.org/.
Valentine gifts for someone special or for yourself are here at George Mason University from noon -4pm on February 14, 2023. Satisfy your sweet tooth with Kingsbury Chocolates, find a handmade bag from Karina Gaull, pick up treats from Village