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New chief for the Nation's Capital: Sarasota County's Kenneth Ellerbe. Retiree from DC with controversial employment arrangement during Rubin administration.

Previous coverage of Chief Kenneth Ellerbe

Release listing accomplishments of Chief Dennis Rubin’s administration

Previous coverage of Chief Dennis Rubin

Two TV station’s in Washington, DC (WJLA-TV & WRC-TV) are confirming that Kenneth Ellerbe, fire chief in Sarasota County, Florida, will be announced by Mayor-elect Vincent Gray later today as the next fire chief in Washington, DC.  

Chief Kenneth Ellerbe in a Sarasota County photo.
This will be Ellerbe’s second stint in the chief’s office for the District of Columbia Fire & EMS Department. Between April and July, 2000, Ellerbe was interim chief following the sudden resignation of Tom Tippett, who was also an interim chief. Mayor Williams appointed Ronnie Few to take over from Ellerbe. 

Kenneth Ellerbe took the job in Sarasota County in July of 2009, but still owns a house in DC.  

Last year at this time news surfaced of an unusual arrangementmade during the administration of Chief Dennis Rubin that allowed Ellerbe to take the Florida chief’s job while being on leave without pay as a deputy chief in the District of Columbia. The arrangement would have let Ellerbe receive enhanced retirement benefits by staying employed in DC until his 50th birthday last April. reported a year ago today there was a “Personnel Exchange Agreement”with Sarasota County approved in DC by Assistant Fire Chief Brian Lee and Director of Human Resources Brender Gregory. 

After the details of the arrangement surfaced, it was rescinded and Ellerbe officially resigned from the DC Fire & EMS Department on January 15 of this year.

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