KELOWNA – The small community of Joe Rich, east of Kelowna, finally has a new fire chief. The Regional District of Central Okanagan has appointed Ben Wasyliuk as the community’s fire chief.
36-year-old Wasyliuk replaces longtime fire chief Curtis Nyuli. Nyuli was suddenly fired in May after heading up the paid-on-call fire department for 12 years. The Regional District has never commented on why it let Nyuli go.
READ MORE: Joe Rich Fire Chief Fired
Wasyliuk has been with the Joe Rich department since 2011.
‘I’m definitely excited,” says Wasyliuk. “There will be new things to learn and new responsibilities but I’m up for the challenge.”
When asked about the departure of his former boss, Wasyliuk would only say he has a lot of respect for Nyuli.
“Curtis was very committed to the department and what he brought forward in terms of culture and training so I hope to continue with that,” says Wasyliuk.
Wasyliuk held the position of assistant fire chief since April. He’s lived in Joe Rich since 2007.