One of the two candidates for fire chief has dropped out of the running

The field of candidates vying for fire chief in Southborough was cut in half this week when one of the two finalists for the position dropped out.

Assistant Town Administrator Vanessa Hale said Haverill Sr. Deputy Chief Brian Moriarty withdrew his name from consideration. He did not give a reason.

Moriarty had been one of two candidates promoted to the final round of interviews after months of screening that included taking part in an all-day assessment center. The other finalist is Fred Mitchell, who is currently deputy chief of the North Cumberland, RI fire district.

The Board of Selectmen was scheduled to interview both finalists on Wednesday night, and Selectman Bill Boland said the interview will go ahead as scheduled with the one remaining candidate. “There’s absolutely no reason not to continue with the interview,” Boland said. “(Mitchell) shouldn’t be penalized because someone dropped out.”

While he said he did not know why Moriarty withdrew, Boland said he was glad it happened now as opposed to after the final interviews. “It’s better to do some soul-searching before you get too far,” he said.

Selectmen decided earlier this year that the fire chief would have to live within an 15-mile radius of Southborough’s borders. Both Mitchell and Moriarty would be required to relocate if they were to get and accept the position, Boland said.

The fire chief selection process has been the focus of some criticism from residents who were disappointed that no internal candidates made it to the final round, but Boland said he has faith in the work performed by the search committee.

“The committee went through everything and advanced people they felt they could recommend that met the qualifications,” he said. “The committee did a very thorough job.”

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John Kendall
12 years ago

Well that sure is disappointing to say the least. Maybe we can look back on a couple of the candidates?

12 years ago

The Board of Selectmen should readdress the issue, as it is not fair to the Board or the Town’s people to be TOLD who their next Fire Chief will be. The Board should have the opportunity to choose, maybe they will see something they don’t like. It’s an easy solution, simply invite the #3 candidate to take the place of the guy who left. What happens if the RI guy decides not to accept the job, do we start all over? Research Rockland, MA. The same scenario occurred but they made the right call by adding more candidates to the final interview to allow them to CHOOSE. True fairness would be to have the top outside candidate and top internal candidate interview. The Selectmen should do the right thing, postpone the interview and take some time to decide what is in the best interest of everyone, it’s been months – what’s a few more weeks….

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