South King Fire and Rescue Chief Vic Pennington raises his right hand as he takes his Oath of Office on Friday, Dec. 27 at the monthly board of fire commissioners meeting, sworn in by Judge Dave Larson. Pennington’s swearing in ceremony was followed by a thunderous and lengthy applause from meeting attendees including fire department staff, board commissioners, Des Moines City Council members and family members. Olivia Sullivan/staff photo

South King Fire and Rescue Chief Vic Pennington raises his right hand as he takes his Oath of Office on Friday, Dec. 27 at the monthly board of fire commissioners meeting, sworn in by Judge Dave Larson. Pennington’s swearing in ceremony was followed by a thunderous and lengthy applause from meeting attendees including fire department staff, board commissioners, Des Moines City Council members and family members. Olivia Sullivan/staff photo

New South King Fire chief steps down from Des Moines City Council seat

“I’m done with my work there [on council] and it’s time, now that I’m the chief here, to focus and give my 110 percent to this organization.”

Vic Pennington is stepping from one leadership role to another this month.

After serving for six years on the Des Moines City Council, Vic Pennington told the Mirror he will be stepping down from his position as deputy mayor next week.

Last February, Pennington was selected as the new fire chief of South King Fire and Rescue following the retirement of longtime fire chief Dr. Allen Church, effective December 2019.

Pennington took his oath of office at the South King Fire and Rescue Board of Commissioners meeting on Dec. 27 at station 67 in Des Moines. At the meeting, board chair Bill Gates also took his oath of office for another term to serve on the board until 2023.

Sworn in by Judge Dave Larson, Pennington’s ceremony was met with a lengthy and thunderous applause from meeting attendees, which included SKFR department staff, board commissioners, Des Moines City Council members and family.

After the meeting, Pennington told the Mirror he plans to resign from his council seat at the first Des Moines City Council meeting of the new year on Thursday, Jan. 9.

“Both the city and the fire district, it takes a lot of time,” he said. “And my focus needs to be on the fire district. I can’t do both for a variety of reasons …”

Although Pennington’s current council term does not end until Dec. 31, 2021, he recognizes his members of the fire department give “110%” in effort and dedication and that he needs to return the commitment.

Pennington said he thoroughly enjoyed his time on the council and will fondly remember the tremendous accomplishments in the duration of his six years of civic service, such as the successful financial leadership that prevented Des Moines from going bankrupt.

“I’m done with my work there [on council] and it’s time, now that I’m the chief here, to focus and give my 110 percent to this organization.”


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