Coral Springs Fire Chief Donald A. Haupt, Jr. will retire on April 30, 2007 after serving the community for six and a half years. Chief Haupt came to Coral Springs in August of 2001 from Norfolk, Virginia, where he had been the Fire Chief for many years. He had a long and distinguished career there, including the distinction of becoming the first person certified as a Paramedic in the State of Virginia in 1979. City Manager Michael Levinson noted that “Chief Haupt has done everything we’ve asked of him and a lot more.” One of Haupt’s first challenges upon arriving in Coral Springs was transitioning the department from a mostly volunteer force to a paid department, growing from 66 employees to 152. He also established more demanding minimum firefighter standards, mandated the use of GPS technology on Fire equipment, expanded the Coral Springs Fire Academy, and helped to create the City’s Community Emergency Response Team. Recently, the City opened the new Public Safety Training & Technology Center, a project that Chief Haupt championed from early on. The facility, located in the industrial park, houses the Coral Springs Fire Academy, a regional program recognized as one of the State’s best. In fact, the Academy holds the State record for nine consecutive classes with 100% graduation rates. Many of the programs and equipment developed in Coral Springs are now used as State standards. “Thank you for the opportunity to serve the citizens of Coral Springs and Parkland,” said Haupt. “It’s been the best part of my 36 years in the fire service.” In his letter to Levinson he said that he is retiring due to a medical illness. “Chief Haupt will be sorely missed,” said Levinson. “He has created one of the finest agencies in the country. Coral Springs is proud of the professionalism and technological leadership of our department.” “Don has been a vital part of our management team,” Levinson added, “and a good friend to our community.” Deputy Chief John Forbes will serve as acting Fire Chief during the nationwide search for a replacement.