Register | Forgot Your Password? | Close
Kara Kalkbrenner. (City of Phoenix Photo)

PHOENIX -- The city of Phoenix made history Thursday after naming a woman to take over as acting chief of its fire department.

Kara Kalkbrenner was named the city's first female acting fire chief.

Kalkbrenner first joined the department in 1985 and has risen through the ranks. In her previous position as Executive Assistant Chief of Administration, she oversaw the department's $300 million budget and acted as a liaison to both city and educational officials.

Her husband, Kevin, is an assistant fire chief with the city of Phoenix.

Former Phoenix Fire Chief Bob Khan confirmed he would be retiring effective Feb. 28 on Wednesday. He said he was leaving the department to care for his elderly father.

"My dad has Alzheimer's disease and dementia, and has been asking me to retire," he told KTAR.

Khan said he was essentially serving as a part-time chief because of his concern over his father.

"The care and comfort that I've been trying to give to my dad is emotionally draining, to be blunt," he said. "I was half here. I have been half here for a couple of months. I don't think it's fair to the city to be half of a fire chief. I don't think it's right to keep a job when I am not able to completely devote myself. That would be against everything I've done for over three decades."

KTAR's Bob McClay contributed to this story.

KTAR Newsroom,

share this story:
Attention Comment Users: We have recently changed our comments boards.
We would like you to be part of the conversation and The Voice of Arizona by logging in with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing KTAR (Arizona Sports) account members will need to create a Disqus account or use one of the aforementioned social media logins. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus

World Class Arizona

  • Dignity Health

    World Class People. World Class Company. Excellent care, delivered with compassion, for all in need.

Voice For A Better Arizona

  • Family in Focus

    KTAR spends the week taking a look at the issues a modern Arizona family faces.