STEUBENVILLE - It took just 15 minutes Thursday for five city firefighters to be promoted in rank.
The photos took a little longer, as the new fire department officers stood with family members and their colleagues.
"We are a family in the fire department. Today is a very good day for our department," observed Assistant Fire Chief Mike Taylor.
NEW FIRE OFFICERS — Five Steubenville firefighters were promoted Thursday during ceremonies held at the Historic Fort Steuben Visitors Center. Taking part were, from left, Chief Carlo Capaldi, Assistant Chief Frank DeLeonardis, Capt. Steve Schaefer, Capt. Rob Wright and Lt. and Mechanic Porter Helsel. - Dave Gossett
Carlo Capaldi was sworn in as fire chief, succeeding Terri English, who retired from the post in February.
The 20-year veteran of the department said he was "proud and excited to become chief."
"I have a serious responsibility to the residents of our city, for all of the members of the fire department and the city administration. I am happy to be in this position and am ready to get to work," said Capaldi.
"I don't anticipate any immediate changes, but we will continue to look at ways we can be more effective and cost-efficient as we move forward. The good thing is the three assistant chiefs have been doing the chief's duties since February. So I have been able to ease into the job," Capaldi said.
Also taking the oath of office from Jefferson County Court Judge Joe Corabi were Frank DeLeonardis who was promoted to assistant chief; Rob Wright and Steve Schaefer, who both were promoted to the rank of captain; and Porter Helsel, who is now the lieutenant and mechanic.
"This is the largest group of promotions I have seen since I joined the fire department," Taylor said.
"Frank DeLeonardis and I came onto the job together. Rob Wright, Steve Schaefer and Porter Helsel worked on my crew. And I have known Carlo for a long time. I know he will do a very good job as chief," added Taylor.
"This is an exciting day for the city and the fire department as we move forward under new leadership," said City Manager Cathy Davison.
"This is a new cohesive group of individuals who have worked together. This is a good example of why it is good to promote from within a department. It was very touching to see the family members called forward to pin the new badge on the promoted officers. I can remember when I pinned a badge on my husband when he served as a firefighter in Virginia. It is a very proud moment for everyone. And I am very proud of these firefighters who serve the city of Steubenville," Davison stated.
"I can't say enough about the leadership in this city. We are seeing strong leaders across the community," remarked Corabi.