Chief Ken Block resigns from Edmonton fire department: ‘We are truly grateful’

Edmonton Fire Chief Ken Block speaks with Global News in a year-end interview in December 2017.
Edmonton Fire Chief Ken Block speaks with Global News in a year-end interview in December 2017. Global News

After 10 years as Edmonton’s fire chief, Ken Block is moving on.

Block’s resignation was announced on Tuesday afternoon. He has been appointed the first fire commissioner of soon-to-be established Fire Rescue Victoria in Victoria, Australia, according to a City of Edmonton news release.

“We thank Ken for his dedication and commitment at Edmonton Fire Rescue Services for the past 40 years,” deputy city manager Rob Smyth said in a news release.

Block has been Edmonton’s fire chief for the past decade, after being appointed to the role on Feb. 1, 2009. He has been with Edmonton Fire Rescue Services since 1980.

“We are truly grateful for his many contributions and efforts to ensure consistent high standards of quality in Edmonton Fire Rescue Services and building this service to be recognized globally as a leader,” read a letter sent Tuesday on behalf of the executive and members of the Edmonton Fire Fighters’ Union IAFF Local 209.

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“We would like to recognize his 40 years of dedicated and exceptional service in the Fire Rescue Services to the City of Edmonton,” the letter reads.

“He has been an unwavering supporter of our fire service and has strengthened the union’s positive working relationship.

“We are certain that the State of Victoria will benefit from his dedication and leadership. Our best wishes and thoughts are with Ken in his future endeavors.”

Block’s last day with EFRS will be Feb. 3, 2020.

Block is currently out of the country but will speak to the media about his resignation on Friday.