Bartlett Fire District chief retiring in June

Bartlett Fire Protection District Fire Chief Mike Falese is retiring in June following nine years as chief, nearly 12 with the district, and 38 in the fire service altogether.

Fire District Board President Jim McCarthy issued a statement this week commenting on the imminent change of leadership and what it will mean inside and outside district headquarters.

"The district is going to miss the chief tremendously," McCarthy wrote. "He is a highly respected figure in our district and throughout the surrounding departments. While at Bartlett, he developed a unifying culture and strong work ethic among the dedicated men and women of our fire district.

"On behalf of my fellow board members, our administration and all of our personnel, I want to thank the chief for his exemplary leadership, his consummate professionalism and for his selfless devotion to public service," McCarthy continued.

As a retiree, Falese will spend more time with his family and take in more White Sox games, McCarty added.

Falese was named Fire Chief of the Year by the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association in 2014. During his time in Bartlett, he served as a director of that association in 2010, vice president in 2011 and president in 2012. He also serves on the DuPage and Kane County Fire Chiefs Associations.

Among the other responsibilities Falese has taken on in the community are his service on the Elgin Area School District U-46 safety committee and the board of advisers for the department of public administration at Northern Illinois University.

Falese also is past president of Bartlett Rotary Club and is a two-time Rotarian of the Year. He currently serves on the nonprofit Ignite the Courage to help people in need.

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