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Aug 23, 2021

For Immediate Release:

August 23, 2021


Julie Happy

Community Affairs Manager

Spokane Valley Fire

(509) 892.4155





Spokane Valley Fire Department (SVFD) Fire Chief Bryan Collins has announced his retirement effective March 1, 2022.  Chief Collins has been working with the Board of Fire Commissioners for the past several months regarding his impending retirement. Chief Collins and the Board will define and conduct a process that will ultimately lead to the selection of the next SVFD Fire Chief.  Chief Collins plans to work with whomever is selected to ensure the transition continues the SVFD quality of service our Fire District community has become accustomed to experiencing when they need emergency and non-emergency services.

“It has been my pleasure to serve the Spokane Valley Fire Department community these past 8 years,” said Chief Collins.  “The SVFD community is fortunate to have a highly regarded fire department that receives national recognition for its ability to save lives through innovative practices like Pit Crew CPR that yield significantly higher than national average results.  With EMS calls being 80% of our response, being a high-performance department is impactful to a community. I am proud to have been a part of a fire department that is constantly seeking to improve practices and to be an innovative leader in the industry.”

While at Spokane Valley Fire Department, Chief Collins had many accomplishments including:

  • Bringing about an innovative and modern 911 system with Spokane Regional Emergency Communications (SREC 911).
  • Implementing Community Risk Reduction Programs (CRR) for fire safety practices and education.
  • Earning Accreditation, making SVFD the only 1 of 2 accredited Fire Departments east of the Cascades (Fairchild AFB Fire & Emergency Services); only 1 of 6 fire departments in WA; only 1 of 276 nationwide; and only 1 of 293 worldwide.
  • Maintaining a Washington State Rating Bureau (WSRB) 2 rating which directly benefits the SVFD Community through lower insurance ratings.

Chief Collins brought more than 27 years of experience in the fire service when he joined SVFD on March 1, 2013. In 2012, he retired as Assistant Fire Chief from the San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District in San Ramon, California.

“The Board of Fire Commissioners are very grateful for the 8 plus years of service Chief Bryan Collins has given to the Spokane Valley Fire Department,” said SVFD Board of Fire Commissioners Chair, Patrick Burch. “The department has grown and accomplished many great things during his time as Fire Chief. We are grateful for his leadership, not only in the department, but in the communities we serve. It has been a real pleasure as a board to work with Chief Collins.  We wish him well in his retirement.”

Spokane Valley Fire Department wishes Chief Collins a happy retirement and thanks him for his many years of service.

SVFD Fire Chief Bryan Collins

About Spokane Valley Fire Department
The Spokane Valley Fire Department (SVFD) serves a population of 125,000+ over 75-square miles, including the cities of Spokane Valley, Liberty Lake and Millwood, as well as surrounding unincorporated areas. In 2020, our cross-trained Firefighter/EMTs and Firefighter/Paramedics responded to more than 18,700 emergency calls.

Established in 1940, SVFD is committed to pursuing excellence and is distinguished as an accredited agency by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI), and by SVFD’s Class 2 fire insurance rating from the Washington Survey and Rating Bureau

Connect with SVFD at: For department news, safety information, and timely updates, find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube.


Did you Know?


  • You can sign up for a station tour. Great for small groups.
  • You should replace the batteries in your smoke alarms twice a year.
  • Creating a defensible space with regards to wildfires could just save your home or property.

Media Contact

  • Julie Happy
  • 509-892-4155

Commissioner Patrick Burch

Board Member Since: July 18, 2016
Current term expires: December 31, 2025

Commissioner Burch was appointed to the Board of Fire Commissioners in July 2016 to fill an unexpired term and has served continuously since that time. He became a volunteer member of the Department’s CERT Team in 2008 and later served as a team leader/member of Fire Corps.

“I admire the Spokane Valley Fire Department’s focus on continuous improvement. Our dedication to the community, fiscal responsibility and the fact that we are one of the few accredited fire departments in the State of Washington all make SVFD great!”

Note: As the individual appointed to this non-partisan position, Commissioner Burch was elected by voters in November 2017.

Commissioner Mike Kester

Board Member Since: January 1, 2020
Current six year term expires: December 31, 2025

Commissioner Mike Kester was elected to the Board of Fire Commissioners in November, 2019.

Commissioner Kester grew up in the Spokane area and has a deep appreciation for just how fortunate we all are to live in this beautiful area. He believes that being involved in this community is not something to take lightly.

His background includes joining the United States Coast Guard (U.S.C.G) after high school and serving on a port firefighting boat doing search and rescue in Portland, Oregon.  After the Coast Guard, he attended the University of Montana earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Resource Management.  He then went on to work for the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Parks, serving in their Parks Department.

Spokane was the next step in his career. He  went to work for the Burlington Santa Fe Railroad and the next 22 years was spent as a conductor moving freight. Commissioner Kester  retired in 2010 after a workplace injury and now,  he and his wife enjoy making meals for World War II Veterans, helping out at the YMCA ,and providing meals for those in need.

“In the 25 years of being a resident of the Spokane Valley the professionalism of the SVFD has inspired me to take an active part in bettering our community. We have one of the best fire departments in the whole Pacific Northwest. My wife and I have 3 children and 5 grandchildren. I have dedicated my life to keeping them safe.  I want to apply that dedication to our community.  Keeping us all safe is a goal we should all aspire to in one way or another. Communication within the department and with the public is, and always will be one of my primary goals.”

Commissioner John Guarisco

Board Member since: August 27, 2018
Current six year term expires: December 31, 2027

Commissioner Guarisco was appointed to the Board of Fire Commissioners in August 2018 to fill an unexpired term and has served continuously since that time. Commissioner Guarisco founded Marjoni Marketing in 2004 and in 2010 merged with MDI marketing. He then pursued Real Estate, earning his license and now, currently serves the greater Spokane area as a licensed Realtor. He has long been active in the community and has won numerous awards during his career including the Volunteer of the Year (2014) and the Community Caring Award (2010) from the Greater Spokane Valley Chamber of Commerce.  He is a member of the Greater Spokane Valley Rotary Club and holds an AA degree from Spokane Falls Community College.

Note: As the individual appointed to this non-partisan position, Commissioner Guarisco was elected by voters in November 2019.

Commissioner Bill Anderson

Board Member since: January 1, 2000
Current six year term expires: December 31, 2023

Commissioner Anderson served our community as a Spokane Valley Fire Department firefighter for 29 years. Throughout his career, he worked as a firefighter, dispatcher and engineer before he was promoted and became an officer. He was Station Captain of Millwood Station 2 when he retired in 1999. During his years as firefighter, he was an active leader of Spokane Valley Firefighters Local 876 and served as a trustee on the Washington State Council of Firefighters for 25 years.

“It’s important to me that we continue the good service we’ve always given the people. We’ve accomplished a lot and are pulling in the same direction to get better. I’m very proud of the Spokane Valley Fire Department.”

Commissioner Brian Asmus

Board Member Since: June 14, 2021
Current term expires: 

Commissioner Brian Asmus was appointed to the Spokane Valley Fire Department Board of Fire Commissioners in 2021.

Commissioner Asmus is the former Liberty Lake Police Chief and current Director of Safety and Security at Central Valley School District (CVSD).

“Brian Asmus brings extensive Public Safety leadership experience, and a long history of being actively engaged in his community to his new role as a SVFD Commissioner,” said SVFD Fire Chief, Bryan Collins. “During his time as a Police Chief, Brian interacted with SVFD firefighters and administrators on a regular basis, making him very familiar with our structure, standing within our communities, as well as with many of our current SVFD board members and personnel. Brian’s experience working and collaborating on regional issues aligns nicely with SVFD’s philosophy and will help us continue to be a catalyst for local and regional excellence and innovation.”