Winn heading to Cape Cod
Recorder/ Peter MacDonald Greenfield fire chief Michael Winn with a fire truck he is also president of the area fire chief organization
GREENFIELD — Greenfield Fire Chief Michael Winn has decided to take a job on Cape Cod, and Mayor William Martin has chosen Deputy Chief Robert Strahan to act as chief until a permanent one is hired.
“Chief Winn announced this week that he will be leaving,” said Martin on Thursday. “He has given the town his formal resignation and will leave in early June.”
Martin said the town made a concerted effort to keep the 39-year-old Winn in town, but said Greenfield was the underdog when all was said and done.
“Unfortunately, we are losing a young talent with a lot of skills,” said Martin.
Winn could not be reached for comment Thursday by press time.
Martin said all during negotiations, it never seemed to be about money with Winn. He said it appeared to be a very difficult decision for him.
Martin said Greenfield is proud that one of its leaders has the skills and talent to be selected to lead a bigger fire department in Massachusetts.
“I’ve spoken with Deputy Chief Strahan,” said Martin. “He has the experience and knowledge to handle the chief’s position until we hire a new one.”
Martin said the only problem is that it could take more than a year to hire someone if Greenfield has to follow Civil Service rules. Currently, the town’s police and fire departments are Civil Service departments, though Martin has been trying to change that policy.
“A Civil Service test for fire chief won’t be given until next March,” he said. Then, it will take up to eight months after the process to yield a list of people who passed it and for the town to hire someone. “That just adds to our frustration, but it’s the reality.”
Martin said he hopes to choose Strahan’s replacement within the next two to three weeks.
“We’ll also have to follow Civil Service rules to do that,” said Martin.
In a previous interview, Martin called Winn a “diamond on top of a pile of diamonds” and didn’t want to see him leave. The mayor said the town took negotiations as far as it could to keep Winn in Greenfield.
Winn has accepted a job as chief of the Centerville-Osterville-Marstons Mills Fire Department in Barnstable on Cape Cod.
It is not known how much Winn has been offered by the Cape Cod department, but he is currently making $93,000 a year in Greenfield.
In an earlier interview, Winn told The Recorder that his decision “wasn’t going to be a light one.”
He said he had to think about his wife, Amanda Majewski-Winn, who recently began her new job as town administrator for Conway.
Winn had to pass a physical examination and background check before signing a contract with the Cape Cod department, so it appears that happened.
According to earlier information provided by Winn, he will have 13 months to establish a permanent residence on Cape Cod.
Winn has a long history with Greenfield and its fire department.
He was born and raised in Greenfield and became a call firefighter in 1991. He joined the department full-time in 1995 and became a captain in 2001.
He was named provisional chief in 2008 and was sworn in as the department’s official chief in 2010.