BURRILLVILLE – A lifelong resident of Pascoag with a strong military background hopes to increase efficiency in the Pascoag Fire District, and bring personnel and fiscal management procedures to the village department as a member of the commission.
Chris Toti was appointed to the board in May to replace Robert Keable, who resigned from the position. He has served as chairman since, and hopes to retain the role following an election scheduled at the district’s annual meeting on Monday, Sept. 9.
Toti has served for 24 years in the US Army, and currently serves as a lieutenant colonel in the Rhode Island Army National Guard. During his military career, Toti notes he’s gained experience in personnel administration, logistics management, surface maintenance and education services in various positions. He also served a stint as a deputy division chief.
The current board chairman also worked for the State of Rhode Island at Zambarano Hospital as a food service supervisor and taught social studies for several years at high schools in Blackstone-Millville, North Providence and Burrillville.
Toti was a volunteer firefighter for 13 years with Pascoag Fire Department, and has also served on the Burrillville Zoning Board of Review. He holds two master’s degrees – in public administration and secondary education – and has also served as vice chairman, and then chairman, of the board for the Pascoag Utility District Board of Commissioners.
He is a member of American Legion Post 88 and has two sons, Christian and Cameron.
Toti said that as a member of the commission, he hopes to introduce personnel and fiscal management procedures that will increase efficiency in the ways in which fire and rescue services are provided to the residents of Pascoag. He also wants to ensure that firefighters training and equipment requirements are met and that the Pascoag Fire Department remains as a volunteer and full-time, independent fire service.
The candidate, one of six running for the position in the election next week, told NRI NOW that one of his skills – and passions – is “putting the people and the resources together to be able to meet the need,” is any position. He said he was inspired to serve after noting a need for those skills in the district.
“I like doing that,” Toti said.
The election will be held at the district’s annual meeting on Sept. 9 starting at 7 p.m. at the station at 141 Howard Ave. All residents of the district, or those taxed by the PFD, are eligible to vote.
NRI NOW is offering all candidates for the commission the opportunity to discuss their background and platform. The final day to submit profile information is Saturday, Sept. 7 by 8 p.m. Interested parties should email firstname.lastname@example.org.