Skip to content

Burnaby Fire Department loses deputy chief to Port Moody

Deputy Chief Darcey O'Riordan taking on chief's role in Tri-Cities department after 26 years as Burnaby firefighter

One of Burnaby’s three deputy fire chiefs is leaving the city to take on the top job in Port Moody.

After 26 years of service in Burnaby, Darcey O’Riordan will join Port Moody Fire Rescue on June 7 and take command of the department on June 17 after the departure of retiring Chief Ron Coulson, according to a City of Port Moody news release Monday.

O’Riordan has been one of Burnaby’s top fire officials since he stepped into the deputy chief’s position in 2016, periodically serving as acting chief for extended periods.

After former fire Chief Joe Robertson left the Burnaby Fire Department after three decades of service in 2019 without any explanation from the city, O’Riordan and fellow deputies Chris Bowcock and Dave Samson took turns in the top spot for more than a year.

O’Riordan started his career as a firefighter in Burnaby in 1995, working his way up the ranks over the years.

He has a bachelor’s degree in business with a concentration in management and organizational studies from Simon Fraser University, according to the release.

He and his family live in the Tri-City area and he graduated from a Port Moody high school, the release said.  

“We are excited to welcome Darcey O’Riordan to Port Moody Fire Rescue,” Port Moody Mayor Rob Vagramov said in the release. “He has been described as a resilient leader with exceptional concern for the success of others, and I am certain his experience and expertise will be an asset for the department, the city’s leadership team, and the community as a whole.”

O’Riordan said he is looking forward to taking on the key community leadership role of fire chief in Port Moody.

“It is a privilege to follow in Chief Coulson’s footsteps and to continue his progressive work,” he said in the release. “I have already seen examples of how welcoming and dedicated the Port Moody Fire Rescue team is.”

O'Riordan told the NOW he's looking forward to the new opportunities ahead but he'll look back fondly on his time in Burnaby.

“I’ve learned so much over the years as a BFD member serving the Burnaby community," he said. "I have many fond memories of responding to incidents and training in the fire stations. There are so many exceptional men and women who go above and beyond every day. I will certainly miss the people of the Burnaby Fire Department.”

Follow Cornelia Naylor on Twitter @CorNaylor