Shane Garland

Shane Garland became Watauga County Fire Marshal on June 21.

BOONE — Watauga County has a new Fire Marshal, as Shane Garland has been announced to take on the mantle effective June 21.

Garland succeeds Taylor Marsh, who stepped down on May 7 to take a state-level position. Since then, Assistant Fire Marshal Jay Kerley has been handling the duties on an interim basis.

At the time of Marsh’s leaving, Emergency Services Director Will Holt noted the search for his replacement would begin immediately, and the search concluded with Garland.

“As with all positions, Mr. Garland was hired because he was the most qualified candidate for the position,” Holt said. “Mr. Garland is a native of the High Country and comes to us most recently from the town of Boone where he served as a Captain in the fire department.”

In his new role, Garland will be making a salary of $58,000 per year as he reports to Holt. However, Holt noted it will all be a team effort for the department as a whole.

Garland takes the job with more than 25 years of experience in the fire service. He is a Level III Fire Prevention Inspector, certified Fire Investigator and a Level II Fire Officer, all of which Holt noted as being helpful in his new position.

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