The city of Mebane has hired John Wellons as the city’s new fire chief, succeeding veteran fire chief Robert “Bob” J. Louis, whose retirement takes effect at the end of this month.
Wellons has been employed with the Chapel Hill fire department for the past 20 years, and currently serves as the department’s interim chief of operations and training.
Mebane’s city officials announced Wellons’ hiring late Wednesday.
Wellons is hardly a stranger to Mebanites. For the past eight years, he has served as a volunteer firefighter with the Mebane fire department and was promoted to volunteer fire captain in 2018.
Wellons is certified in fire rescue management through the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and in law and administration through Coastal Carolina Community College.
In his current role with the Chapel Hill fire department, he oversees daily operations, staff, facilities, records, and reports, according to Mebane city officials.
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The city had more than 50 applicants for the post, Mebane city manager Chris Rollins said Wednesday.
“As a long-time resident of Mebane and a volunteer with the department, I am both humbled and honored to accept the position and look forward to continuing the legacy of excellence for which the Mebane fire department is widely known,” Wellons said in a statement issued by the city. “I am grateful for the opportunity to serve my community in this role. I eagerly anticipate working alongside the many wonderful volunteers, paid firefighters, community members, and community leaders within our city.”
For his part, Rollins pointed to Wellons’ experience with a larger fire department, in Chapel Hill, as well as his dedication as a volunteer with Mebane’s fire department, as factors that contributed to his selection as the city’s next fire chief.
Wellons is scheduled to begin his duties as Mebane fire chief on December 21.
See story on sendoff for retiring fire chief Bob Louis, retiring after 30 years in the Mebane Fire Department: https://alamancenews.com/long-time-fire-chief-honored-during-council-meeting-as-he-retires/