A 23-year veteran of the San Jose Fire Department has been promoted to temporarily lead the agency until the city manager appoints a permanent chief.
Curtis Jacobson, a deputy chief, will step into his new role Feb. 1, the city announced Tuesday. Interim Chief Ruben Torres retires this week—taking with him about $145,000 in annual pension payouts—so he can start his new job as chief of the Livermore-Pleasanton Joint Fire Department.
Jacobson will hold the agency's top job while the city conducts a national search for candidates to fill the role for the long run, interim City Manager Norberto Dueñas said in a memo to the City Council.
The final candidate will be chosen by whoever the council appoints as city manager, Dueñas added.
The city hired Jacobson as a firefighter in 1992. He climbed the ranks, being promoted to captain in 1999 and battalion chief in 2007.
From 2011 to 2013, he worked as a higher-class deputy chief and, last year, as a division chief. His base salary in 2013, the most recent year reported in a public database, was $141,835.
"Curtis has served in many capacities in fire operations, fire prevention, training, administration, and as fire marshal,"Dueñas said. "He has a broad and deep knowledge of the firefighting profession, our department and its staff, as well as our community as a result of his active personal community engagement."