A Goldsboro firefighter with nearly 30 years of experience has been named the next Goldsboro fire chief.

Ron Stempien, assistant chief of support services with the Goldsboro Fire Department, will begin as chief on June 30. He succeeds former chief Joe Dixon, who resigned after accepting a post with the city of Gainesville in Florida.

“I am humbled for the opportunity to serve as the next fire chief of Goldsboro,” Stempien said. “I look forward to continuing to work with the employees of the Goldsboro Fire Department and the citizens to embody the mission, vision and values of the city of Goldsboro.”

Stempien became the top pick from a pool of 51 candidates that were narrowed to five, said LaToya Henry, Goldsboro public information officer

“Our top five candidates went through a rigorous selection process involving subject matter experts and fire chiefs from communities across the state of North Carolina, and Ron came out on top,” said Tim Salmon, Goldsboro city manager. “I look forward to what he will do for our firefighters and the city of Goldsboro.”

Stempien, 49, began his career as a Goldsboro firefighter in 1996, was promoted to fire engineer in 1998, fire captain in 2004, and assistant chief in 2019, Henry said. Stempien has been an emergency services instructor since 2005.

Prior to Goldsboro, Stempien served four years in the U.S. Air Force as a fire protection specialist.

Stempien, a Detroit native, has an associate’s degree in emergency preparedness from Nash Community College and is set to receive a bachelor’s degree in public and nonprofit administration in December from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. He has numerous specialized fire-related certifications, has received an array of awards during his military and firefighting career, and is active with several associations, Henry said.

He will earn an annual salary of $92,000, Henry said.