City Manager Mark Watson Appoints Darryl Kerley as Oak Ridge Fire Chief

City Manager Mark Watson announced today the selection of Mr. Darryl Kerley as the 7th Fire Chief for the City of Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

Mr. Kerley is being promoted from his present position of Deputy Chief for the City after serving in that position for five years. Mr. Kerley comes to the City with 33 years of experience in both fire service and the private sector. His knowledge is also built on a strong familiarity with Department of Energy (DOE)
operations in Oak Ridge where Mr. Kerley served as the Fire Chief for the DOE’s K-25 operations.

Additionally, Mr. Kerley has served in a variety of other positions leading up to his present position as Deputy Chief, including service with Rural/Metro Fire Department, Chief of the Seymour Volunteer Fire Department, and a rescue diver with the Knoxville Volunteer Emergency Rescue Squad. He also worked for 24 years in engineering services with TVA and Baston, Himes, Norvell and Poe Engineers.

He is currently an adjunct instructor for the Tennessee Fire Service and Codes Academy and served two years as an Assistant to Firefighter Grant (AFG) peer reviewer for the Department of Homeland Security. In February 2004 he became accredited as a Chief Fire Officer through the Commission on Professional Credentialing, Center for Public Safety Excellence.

Kerley was selected from a field of five internal candidates who expressed a desire to be Fire
Chief. Mark Watson, City Manager said: “I am proud to be able to make a Fire Chief selection from
within the Oak Ridge Fire Department. It is a strong statement to the quality of well-trained individuals that we have within our Department. Given the myriad of changes and activities with the federal government and federal contractors, Darryl Kerley brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table that will be beneficial to all within the community.”

Chief Kerley will oversee a department of 74 public safety personnel and an operating budget of six million dollars. Mr. Kerley’s appointment is effective Sunday, September 11, 2011 and his salary is $91,520.

He is a native of South Knoxville; he and his wife Jamie have two daughters and a son-in-law, Ashley and Eric Farmer, Hannah, and two grandsons, Jackson and Bryce.

News media contact: Amy Fitzgerald (865) 425-3554 or