The city of Altoona's search for a new chief to lead the fire department is close to coming to an end.
City representatives said Wednesday that they have narrowed down the number of applicants from 12 to five. Some of the finalists include individuals right from Altoona and around the area.
Before a job offer is made, the city will be holding a public meet and greet as an opportunity for the potential hires to interact with the community that they will be serving.
"The mentality that I've had as a police and fire chief has always been putting our community first, and to have the opportunity be returned to the community, to have their investment, their say ,their input and their feedback I think is equally important as much as any other interview process that's in place," said current Altoona Fire and Police Chief Jesse James.