Ga. county to spend up to $300K to rebrand fire department to better represent EMS

“That was all part of us trying to change our culture and really heighten the importance of the EMS,” said Hall County Fire Chief Chris Armstrong


Nick Watson
The Times, Gainesville, Ga.

GAINSEVILLE, Ga. — Hall County plans to spend up to $300,000 for rebranding the fire department to Hall County Fire and Rescue.

In a video announcing the changes, Hall County Fire Chief Chris Armstrong said the impetus to transition from Hall County Fire Services was a $10,000 pay incentive for paramedics adopted in March. Previously, paramedics received a 7.5% pay bump over the firefighter salary.

Hall County Fire Services is being rebranded as Hall County Fire and Rescue.
Hall County Fire Services is being rebranded as Hall County Fire and Rescue. (Image/Hall County Fire Rescue via Facebook)

“That was all part of us trying to change our culture and really heighten the importance of the EMS part of what we do,” Armstrong said. “… Hall County Fire Services has been the name of the department, but, in my opinion, didn’t really reflect all the other services that we provided.”

County spokeswoman Katie Crumley said $138,000 of the budgeted funds would go toward uniforms while the rest is for branding on the vehicles.

While going through this rebranding process, Armstrong said he wanted to “dig a little deeper into our mission statement and really get to the root cause of why we do what we do.”

“In the end, we do mitigate emergencies and prevent illness and injuries in certain cases, but that’s what we do,” the fire chief said. “And the ‘why’ we do was: We come to work to improve lives.”

The new purpose statement is: “Improving lives through excellent service.”

Armstrong said eight volunteers, who ranged from firefighters to lieutenants, worked on the rebranding committee with a consultant.

More than 200 members of the department, which is roughly two-thirds, responded to a survey, with a majority agreeing with the committee’s recommendations, Armstrong said.

“The reason that that was important was we wanted them to really take ownership in this process, give them a voice in the process,” Armstrong said. “That was part of that culture change that we were looking for.”

The department has already updated its social media pages with the new name and logo, but the fire chief said the rest of the changes would be in the coming months.

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(c)2021 The Times, Gainesville, Ga.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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