Fire Chief Morgan Hackl of the Saskatoon Fire Department (SFD) has announced his plans to retire, marking the end of an era spanning 36 years of dedicated service.
Expected to leave his post by March 2024, Chief Hackl’s departure ushers in a new chapter for both himself and the SFD.
Chief Hackl’s journey with the SFD began 36 years ago as a firefighter.
His career saw him progress through various ranks, including captain, battalion chief, and assistant chief, before ascending to the role of Fire Chief in 2015.
His tenure as chief is noted for significant advancements and initiatives that have left a lasting impact on the community.
During his eight years as Fire Chief, Hackl spearheaded numerous successful projects and initiatives.
These include the relocation and construction of Station No. 3 and Station No.
5, enhancing response times across the community, and playing a crucial role in the Incident Command structure during the Humboldt bus tragedy.
His vision led to the creation of a regional training facility for fire and emergency services and proactive community safety partnerships, tackling issues like homelessness through a whole-community approach.
Under his leadership, the SFD also saw the inception of the Overdose Outreach Team pilot in partnership with the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the development of a Regional Emergency Management Organization involving multiple municipalities.
Hackl was instrumental in expanding youth opportunities via the FIRE Cadet program and the implementation of a four-year Strategic Plan for the department.
In recognition of his outstanding contributions, the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs awarded Chief Hackl the 2023 National Fire Chief of the Year Award.
City Manager Jeff Jorgenson expressed mixed emotions regarding Hackl’s retirement, acknowledging his profound influence on the community.
Jorgenson highlighted Hackl’s unique approach to public safety, his ability to forge pivotal partnerships, and his commitment to initiatives like the regional training facility and the Overdose Outreach Team.
“It takes vision and courage to lead the way Chief Hackl does, and as an organization, we congratulate Chief Hackl on his much-deserved retirement,” Jorgenson said.
Chief Morgan Hackl’s retirement signals the end of an influential chapter in the history of the Saskatoon Fire Department.
His leadership style, characterized by innovation and collaboration, has not only enhanced the operational capabilities of the SFD but also fostered a more cohesive and safe community.
His ability to forge key partnerships across various sectors, including health care, social services, and education, exemplifies a forward-thinking approach to public safety and community well-being.
As the SFD transitions to new leadership, Hackl’s legacy will undoubtedly continue to inspire and guide future fire safety and community initiatives.