Fire Department on the lookout for new division chief

The Laguna Beach Fire Department has begun the process of filling the position of former division chief Dan Stefano, who was sworn in as the new Costa Mesa Fire Department chief Tuesday.

"We are currently going and conducting some interviews with an existing list that we have and we'll see where that takes us," Fire Chief Jeff LaTendresse said.

The list has more than 40 names and was compiled from applicants who went through a testing process in January. The interviews will take roughly two more weeks.

"If we stay with the list the worst case scenario would be two months before someone is working," the chief said.

He said that timeline can change if the job is not offered to any of the candidates on the current list. That would mean a new list would have to be compiled.

LaTendresse said the duties of the vacant position are being shared between him and the other division commanders.

The fire chief attended Stefano's oath ceremony and said "it was an honor" to see his former division chief as the head of CMFD.

"It's a great step for him and a reflection of our organization," he added.

—Beau Nicolette

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