Michael Van Dop is the new fire chief for the City of Maple Ridge.
“It is a little surreal,” admitted the former deputy chief, who started in his new role on Monday Oct. 4.
An official announcement was made by the City of Maple Ridge Tuesday afternoon.
Van Dop joined the Maple Ridge Fire Department as a paid-on-call firefighter in 2005. He became a career firefighter in 2009, before being promoted to assistant chief in 2013 and then deputy chief in 2017.
“When I started as a paid-on-call person in 2005 I wouldn’t have predicted this as a career path for myself. I was looking for an opportunity just to serve my community,” said the new fire chief. “A place where I could socialize, serve the community, you know, all of those good things that paid-on-call firefighters do and this is what it’s morphed into over the course of time.”
Van Dop has lived in the Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows areas since 1986 and he feels honoured and privileged to have served the citizens of Maple Ridge for the past 17 years.
He is now looking forward to moving the organization forward and building on successes the department has seen over the years.
”We’ve been blessed with a lot of support from council, from the citizens of Maple Ridge. We’ve done a fair bit of growth over the last 15 to 20 years and what I really look forward to is building on that growth,” remarked Van Dop. “And continuing a real high level of customer service that the citizens have been accustomed to from our team here.” A team he describes as a “fantastic group of people”.
City of Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden expressed his delight with Van Dop’s appointment.
“I got to know Chief Van Dop better, early in my tenure at the City. His promotion to Fire Chief was well deserved, clearly Mike is a smart, highly competent professional,” said Morden.
“I am confident that Council, the City and community will be very well served with Chief Van Dop at the helm of MRFD,” Morden added.
So far Van Dop hasn’t given a great deal of thought to moving offices, or getting a new door plaque that reflects his new title.
“I had someone mention to me that they needed to order a new door plaque for me and I thought, oh, you know what, these are the sorts of things that need to get figured out,” he laughed.
“It’s all very new, it’s all very exciting,” said Van Dop. “You never know where life takes you.”
Have a story tip? Email: email@example.com
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.