The Office of the HFD Fire Chief
Fire Chief Terry Garrison
Terry A. Garrison was confirmed by council, on September, 15, 2010, as the 35th Fire Chief of the City of Houston, having been selected by Mayor Annise Parker.
Garrison began his firefighting career in 1977 with the Phoenix Fire Department (PFD) and retired in 2007. He worked in various capacities for the PFD including fire/arson investigator. He rose to the rank of assistant chief of the operations division. Garrison’s experience in the PFD also included recruiting, public information, management, training in both emergency medical services and fire operations for members and dispatch. He also acted as a representative for the PDF for the Japan Rotary Exchange.
Garrison served as fire chief for the City of Oceanside, California from early 2007 to late 2009. He was responsible for leading 130 members serving 187,000 residents. Most recently, Garrison served as interim chief and assistant chief for the Daisy Mountain Fire District in Arizona, which borders north Phoenix.
Garrison is an educator. He served as a Fire Science Instructor from 1996-2004 and Department Chair/Instructor of the Fire Science Faculty at Phoenix Community College. He co-authored Chief Brunacini’s Fire Command 2nd edition Workbook which outlines incident command procedures, and is sold worldwide and has taught at symposia and conferences for many years.
Garrison was the president and creator of Fire Smart Kids, a company that teaches children fire safety education through the use of the Fire Smart Kids board-game.
Garrison has served as an Observer/Controller with the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX)/National Emergency Response & Rescue Training Center (NERRRTC) in locally simulated WMD emergencies exercises throughout Texas from 2000-2007.
Garrison received his Bachelor of Science degree in Fire Science Management from Ottawa University and a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University. He also completed the Certified Public Manager program from Arizona State University, and attended Harvard’s, JFK School of Government. Garrison has additional certifications as an Incident Safety Officer, Teaching Certificate, Arizona Law Enforcement Peace Officer, and Helicopter Commercial/Flight Instructor.
He is a member of the American Academy of Certified Public Managers, the International Association of Fire Chiefs, the National Fire Protection Association, the Arizona Fire Chiefs Association, the California Fire Chiefs Association and the San Diego County Fire Chiefs Association.
Garrison served in the U.S. Army as a helicopter crew chief, receiving an honorable discharge. He has operated as a commercial helicopter pilot and flight instructor.