Allen Ward, Army Veteran
Regional Director and Fire Chief, Rural Metro Fire (A GMR Solution)
Fighting fires has been a passion of Allen Ward’s his whole life. As a young child, he was impressed by the bravery of the fire fighters he encountered. The passion that was ignited as a young child, would form the basis of Allen’s lifelong career path.
Since 1978, Allen has served in the firefighting field as a volunteer, military and career firefighter. Today, Allen is a Regional Director and Fire Chief for Rural Metro.
Allen’s firefighting career began when he enlisted in the National Guard as a senior in high school. After nine years in the Missouri Guard, he went into active duty in the Army. In his 25-year military career, he served as an aircraft rescue fire fighter, Fire Prevention Officer, Senior Logistics Officer and trainer. His service would take him across the world including deployments in Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Panama.
While on active duty, he deployed to Desert Storm with the 89th Engineer Detachment (FFTG). He was instrumental in developing the specifications for the Tactical Fire Fighting Truck (TFFT) and led the development and fielding of the Joint-Firefighting Integrated Response Ensemble (J-FIRE) while assigned to the U.S. Army Engineer Center at Fort Leonard Wood, MO. His expertise led to the creation of the 5th Army Fire Fighting Center of Excellence at Fort Lewis, WA while assigned to the 91st Division (Training). His military awards and decorations are numerous and include the Meritorious Service Medal (3 OLC), Army Commendation Medal (2 OLC), Kuwait-Liberation-Medal and the Corp of Engineers de Fleury Medal (Bronze).
Making the move from military service to AMR was not a difficult decision for Allen. “I love working for Rural Metro and it was a natural career progression—I was able use my military skills as a fire fighter and continue to serve others,” Allen explained.
Allen’s expertise and leadership skills have served him well in his time at Rural Metro. Over the past 17 years, Allen has served as an aircraft rescue fire fighter, fire captain and fire chief at the Port Columbus International Airport in Columbus, Ohio. He currently leads the Specialty Fire Division comprised of eleven fire department operations across the United States.
Allen is also an author and historian and published a book titled Army Fire Fighting: A Historical Perspective.