When he left the San Marcos Fire Department in 2003 to become the fire division chief in the Poway department, Jon Canavan felt he had acquired “all the tools” necessary to make a positive impact on his new employer.
Sixteen years later, as the city’s newly-appointed fire chief, Canavan will be using those same tools, and those acquired while being a Poway department leader, in his new role.
City Manager Chris Hazeltine named Canavan, 55, fire chief on July 11, following the retirement of Safety Services Director Mark Sanchez. Hazeltine decided to make Sanchez’s replacement a fire chief, reflecting the city manager’s decision to return the responsibility handling matters relating to the sheriff’s department contract with the city to his office.
Raised in San Bernardino, Canavan had designs on a career as an aerospace engineer, but decided after one year at Cal Poly Pomona “I didn’t want to be one of 3,000 engineers designing a landing gear.”