City Administrator Damien R. Arrula has announced the appointment of John “Pono” Van Gieson to serve as Fire Chief for the City of Placentia’s new Fire and Life Safety Department. Mr. Van Gieson comes to Placentia with an exceptional background in both fire and military service. Bringing over 33 years’ experience in public safety to the City of Placentia, Mr. Van Gieson has dedicated his career to the Montgomery County Fire Rescue Service in suburban Washington, D.C., rising through the ranks from Firefighter Paramedic, EMT Instructor, Hazardous Materials Technician, Station Commander, 911 Center Shift Supervisor, EMS Quality Assurance Officer, EMS Battalion Chief, Battalion Commander, Assistant State Fire Marshal, and Operations Shift Commander. His most recent assignment held was Executive Officer to the Operations Chief. In his previous position, he led a shift with over 350 personnel at 37 fire stations protecting a population of 1.2 million residents.