The name at the top of the new Fire Department org chart is going to look familiar to most of you. It’s Mauro. After a unanimous decision by selectmen last night, Joseph Mauro will succeed his brother John Jr. as chief of the Southborough Fire Department.
Mauro has been a name associated with firefighting in Southborough for decades. Joseph joined the Southborough Fire Department in 1981 as a call firefighter, rising to the position of captain in 1987. Brother John Jr. retired last fall after 38 years in the department, 11 of them as chief. In 2010, their father John Sr. retired after 50 years with the department.
In promoting Joseph Mauro last night to the position of chief, selectmen said he would offer “a steady hand at the helm.”
The decision came after the board interviewed three finalists for the position, including Mauro, Southborough Lt. Chris Dano, and Deputy Chief Fred Mitchell of Cumberland, RI.
While selectmen were ultimately unanimous in offering the job to Mauro, they said it was not an easy decision to make, calling all of the candidates “impressive.”
Selectman John Rooney backed Mauro from the start, but Selectmen Bill Boland and Dan Kolenda said they were torn between Mauro and Mitchell.
In preparing for his decision, Rooney said he talked with firefighters both in Southborough and surrounding towns and was given the advice that unless something was significantly broken in the department, the decision should go to an internal candidate.
After some deliberation, Boland agreed and opted to back Mauro. “I don’t think there’s anything significantly enough broken in our department (to go with an external candidate),” he said.
“You know the town incredibly well, and I think the town knows you,” Kolenda said to Mauro. “You’ve earned it through your dedication.”
In his interview last night, Mauro said one of his priorities as chief will be to provide more training opportunities for both full-time and on-call personnel. He said he would also like to see the department staff increased to have five firefighters on duty at all times. Currently, two shifts have five and the other two have four.
Described by selectmen as thoughtful, quiet, and steady, Mauro said he hopes to continue the legacy of good work at the Southborough Fire Department.
“I would like to see the department continue the great service it provides to the citizens of town,” Mauro said.