City welcomes new fire chief


By Chris Berendt - [email protected]



Scott Phillips swears the oath at Tuesday night’s Council meeting as Clinton’s new fire chief, administered by Mayor Lew Starling. His daughter Marlei, 11, and son Cooper, 5, are holding the Bible.


By Chris Berendt

[email protected]

Scott Phillips swears the oath at Tuesday night’s Council meeting as Clinton’s new fire chief, administered by Mayor Lew Starling. His daughter Marlei, 11, and son Cooper, 5, are holding the Bible.
http://clintonnc.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/web1_fire-chief.jpgScott Phillips swears the oath at Tuesday night’s Council meeting as Clinton’s new fire chief, administered by Mayor Lew Starling. His daughter Marlei, 11, and son Cooper, 5, are holding the Bible.

The City of Clinton officially introduced Scott Phillips as the new Clinton Fire Department chief at Tuesday night’s Council meeting.

Phillips has been on the job for about a month now. He was hired following an in-depth assessment center process that was initiated following the departure of former chief Adon Snyder at the end of January.

Phillips’ career in emergency services began over 15 years ago and has included roles as a paramedic and firefighter, according to city officials. He has worked for Harnett County EMS, Dunn Rescue Squad and Dunn Emergency Services, where he most recently served as a captain and assistant chief.

Among his certifications, Phillips is a fire and life safety educator, incident safety officer and fire inspector and owns a bachelor’s degree from Campbell University.

“We’re excited to have him here,” said City manager Shawn Purvis. “We’re excited, the firefighters are excited. In just two or three weeks, we have already felt an impact.”

Mayor Lew Starling administered the oath for Phillips, who swore in as his daughter Marlei, 11, and son Cooper, 5, held the Bible. His parents Roger and Betty Phillips were also present, as were a number of other fire chiefs from across the region, including Hope Mills, Fayetteville and Holly Springs. Many were involved in the assessment center process. Phillips also took time to acknowledge Chief Austin Tew, who served as Clinton’s chief in the interim in recent months, as well as several of Clinton’s firefighters who attended the meeting to witness Phillips’ swearing-in ceremony.

Snyder retired after two and a half years with the department, following which the city moved forward with the process of finding his replacement — using the same in-depth practice it utilized in hiring Snyder. Purvis previously said the external assessment center would give the city the “most complete approach” to hiring the next chief. He lauded Phillips’ performance in that assessment and the interview.

“We had strong candidates in our assessment center for the fire chief position. When I discussed the results with the assessors, there was a strong agreement that Scott would be a good fit for the Clinton Fire Department,” Purvis has stated. “After reviewing how well he did in the assessment and conducting an interview, it was clear that he would offer an enthusiasm that would help create a cohesiveness and provide a vision for the Clinton Fire Department.”

Phillips has said he looked forward to serving as Clinton’s fire chief and leading the department in the years to come.

“I am excited to have been chosen as the fire chief. The process was challenging and fair and I feel fortunate to have been selected,” the new chief remarked. “I want to bring our department together, develop stronger relationships between the Clinton Fire Department and our neighboring districts and move the department into the future.”

Reach staff writer Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

Reach staff writer Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

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