‘Not a career, but a lifestyle’ says Danville Division Chief
Danville Fire Department Division Chief of EMS and Safety Alan Pike joined the ranks right out of high school. He said his parents weren’t exactly thrilled when he signed on as an 18-year-old.
“The job can really change your perspective on life in general,” Pike said. “You see both amazing and tragic things – it can be a real eye opener. It’s not a career, it’s a lifestyle.”
The lifelong Danville resident has served on the department since 1992. His current role at the department includes EMS training for all personnel, quality assurance and improvement of patient care, EMS supplies and equipment, daily staffing and payroll of all employees. Division Chief Pike is married with two children and resides in Danville with his family.
What does a normal day consist of? There aren’t any normal days, but I like to start out at the firehouse talking with the on-duty crew about the day’s activities and sit in on their shift briefing. Then I head to my office to work on quality assurance and improvement of our EMS. I work with our EMS training team to provide current and important EMS training to all personnel. I deal with ensuring we have adequate EMS supplies and equipment. I usually have a meeting or two to attend. They deal with training, lectures, and workshops to educate myself on specific aspects of my job. I also respond to incidents that require a Chief Officer or that are “working incidents.” I’m on call every third day for that response for 24 hours.
What inspired you to become a firefighter? When I was a kid, my neighbor was on the Danville Fire Department and I became interested in doing the same. I applied for the department as soon as I graduated from high school.
What has been one of your favorite moments on the job? I would say working toward better staffing and implementing 24/7 Paramedic service for our community.
What aspect of the job do you find most challenging? Time management is a constant challenge. Completing my day-to-day responsibilities while looking ahead and setting goals for improvement, and achieving those goals in a timely manner.
What are your future goals, professionally and/or personally? Professionally, I want to continue my education to be a valuable asset to the department. Personally, I want to continue to balance spending quality time with my family and handling my responsibilities with the fire department.
Compiled by Chris Cornwall