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KCFD’s new interim chief becomes first woman to lead department in its history

Donna Maize, courtesy of the KC Fire Department

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A 26-year-old veteran of the Kansas City Fire Department has now been named its interim chief.

Last week, the city manager selected Donna Maize as the interim chief. Maize will be the first woman to ever lead KCFD in its more than 150-year history.

Most recently, Maize has served as the assistant city manager for public safety, but she also has a long tenure with the department.

“KCFD has been a part of my life since birth when the selection of my first name was made by the firefighters that worked with my father,” Maize said in a post shared on the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 42 Facebook page.

“For almost 26 years I was able to work alongside all of you in some capacity or another until I became an assistant city manager. To be able to lead KCFD today and into the future is humbling at best.”

Her position became effective on Sunday, and she will serve until a permanent chief is chosen.

Maize takes over for Gary Reese, who stepped down as chief last month after less than two years on the job.

Mayor Quinton Lucas has already shared his support for KCFD’s newest leader on social media.

“We’re proud of her stewardship of some of some important issues for the future of our community,” Lucas said on Twitter.

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