At the recent monthly meeting of the Whatcom County Fire District 7 (WCFD7) Board of Fire Commissioners held Thursday, May 10th, Al Saab announced he will be stepping down from the position he has held for the past 20 years. His last meeting as a commissioner will be in August of this year.
Saab cited family obligations and wanting to travel the United States with his wife as the reasons for his decision.
Saab has been continually re-elected to 6-year terms in Position 1 on the 3-position WCFD7 board since first serving in 1998.
Prior to serving on the board, Saab had served as a volunteer firefighter with the Fire District since 1972 and continued serving for several years after becoming a commissioner.
Saab said a lot has changed during his decades on the board. He estimated the district had about 5 career firefighters when he started to over 50 currently. Saab estimated the current number of volunteer firefighters to be at 60.
Firehouses were built, rebuilt and upgraded over the past 20 years, Saab noted. Residential facilities were added to some enabling 24-hour, 7-days-a-week response to fire and aid calls. He pointed to the EMS contract with Whatcom County and consolidating services with the City of Ferndale as important milestones during his time as a commissioner.
WCFD7 Fire Chief Larry Hoffman said the 2 remaining commissioners, Eric Grant and Mike Murphy, are tasked to appoint someone to fill the volunteer position until the next general election is held in 2019 (it is too late to get on the ballot for this year’s general election). The elected candidate will serve the remainder of the position’s current term which ends in 2021.
Grant began serving his first term on the WCFD7 Board of Fire Commissioners this year following Gerald Metzger’s decision last year not to run for reelection after serving for 35 years.
Murphy has served on the WCFD7 Board of Fire Commissioners since 1996.