MAUI FIRE and POLICE DEPT. MARK HISTORIC FIRSTS
The recent promotion of four firefighters to the rank of battalion chief marked a milestone for the department. The simultaneous promotion of Karl Kubo, Derrick Arruda, James “Kimo” Kino and Valeriano Martin allows the department to fill an existing vacancy and three newly created positions.
The department had sought for eight years to increase the number of battalion chiefs from three to six. The new staffing capacity is aimed at providing increased support to fire crews and incident management through the scheduling of two BCs per day.
Additionally, the recent dedication of the Police Department’s first command vehicle marks the beginning of a new era of emergency management on Maui.
Funding for the $902,000 custom-built command vehicle, was realized through Homeland Security funds and local Forfeiture funds. The vehicle is designed to provide mobile voice and data communications to the Police Department during emergency situations.
The truck is 40′ long, 12′ 3” high and 8′ wide, featuring a native Hawaiian shark-tooth design on the exterior. The artwork created by Uilani Nahoolewa of Uilani Art & Design, represents Maui warrior Kahekili and symbolizes the relationship between nature and mankind.
“These are important milestones for our Police and Fire Departments,” said Mayor Charmaine Tavares. “The state-of-the art incident command vehicle and the unprecedented promotion of a number of battalion chiefs give these departments’ essential resources and support to better serve the public. Many have worked hard over the years to bring the command vehicle to Maui and increase the ranks of the battalion chiefs – our community is benefiting from their diligence.”
Collectively, the four new Fire battalion chiefs have 87 years of service between them, at nine of the department’s 14 fire stations and at the Fire Prevention Bureau.
“Our four new battalion chiefs are highly qualified, talented and dedicated individuals whose nearly nine decades of experience will benefit the department in many ways,” said Fire Chief Jeffrey Murray.
“Having an additional BC on schedule each day will also help maximize our companies’ effectiveness in incident response and management.”
Karl Kubo began his 28-year career in 1981 and was promoted to Captain in 1990; he has worked at the Paia, Makawao, Lanai, Lahaina and Wailuku Fire Stations. He resides Upcountry and enjoys outdoor activities.
Derrick Arruda was hired in 1989 and has 20 years of service working at the Lanai, Napili and Kahului Fire Stations; he has been a Rescue Captain since 2002. He resides in Kokomo with his wife Lori and twin sons Justin and Jordan, and enjoys fishing and surfing.
James “Kimo” Kino was hired in 1989 and has completed 20 years of service at the Lanai, Paia, Hana, Wailea and Kahului Fire Stations. He was a Rescue Captain, HazMat Captain, Training Captain and most recently a Fire Captain at Wailuku Fire Station. He resides in Wailuku with his wife June, and enjoys surfing and paddling, and spending time with his grandson. His son Kaulana Kino carries on the family’s heritage as a Maui Fire Fighter II with HazMat 10, along with Kimo’s brother, Rescue Captain John “Keoni” Kino, who has 23 years of service with Honolulu Fire Department/ Rescue 1. The Kino family’s inspiration: Kimo’s great-great-grandfather on his mother’s side, James Silas Lemon, who served in the elected position of Fire Chief of Honolulu’s Volunteer Fire Department from 1874 to 1878.
Valeriano Martin began his 19-year career with the fire service in 1990 with the Federal Fire Department in Honolulu, and continued with the Honolulu Fire Department before transferring to Maui in 1999. He earned an Associate Degree in Fire Science from Honolulu Community College in 1991, and was promoted to Captain in 2003. He worked at the Napili Fire Station before being promoted to Fire Inspector, then Captain of the Fire Prevention Bureau. He resides in Kahului with his wife Kimberly and their three children, and enjoys outdoor activities.
(Posted by Wendy Osher; The County of Maui, Public Information Office contributed to this story) *** If you enjoyed this post, you may also like our story on Maui Firefighters Promoted to Battalion Chief.