Humboldt Bay Fire Chief Sean Robertson Will Retire at the End of 2024

Press release from Humboldt Bay Fire:

two firemen in suit uniforms in front of a red and black fire engine.

Chief Robertson (R) will turn over the reins of Humboldt Bay Fire to Chief Tim Citro.

Humboldt Bay Fire Joint Powers Authority Fire Chief Sean Robertson has announced his retirement beginning December 30, 2024. 

Beginning his career as a Volunteer Firefighter in Arcata, Robertson quickly proved himself to be a reliable and skilled professional. Over the past 26 years, his extensive experience and deep knowledge have made him an invaluable asset to Humboldt Bay Fire, Eureka Fire Department, Humboldt No. 1 Fire Protection District, and the community he serves. His tenure has been defined by exemplary leadership, consistently going above and beyond to ensure the safety and well-being of the community while effectively guiding Humboldt Bay Fire.  

Humboldt Bay Firefighters Local 652 President Brandon Harlander stated, “Chief Robertson has demonstrated unwavering support for labor rights, creating a collaborative environment that values the contributions of every member of Humboldt Bay Firefighters Local 652. His leadership embodies unity and strength, safeguarding our community with resolve and compassion. We thank Chief Robertson for his exceptional leadership and unwavering commitment to HBFL  652 and Humboldt Bay Fire. We are excited about his upcoming work at College of the Redwoods and are confident that it will further support and enhance the foundation that Chief Robertson and Union leadership have established.” 

Sean Robertson stands as a paragon of dedication, leadership, and service. His contributions have left an indelible mark on Humboldt Bay Fire. As he continues his journey, Sean’s legacy will inspire future generations of firefighters and community members, as he becomes the Assistant Professor in Fire Technology at College of the Redwoods. Chief Robertson will be instrumental in developing and maintaining the Fire Technology curriculum, with the goal of achieving State Fire Training accreditation for the current fire academy. 

“Chief Robertson was appointed Fire Chief by the JPA Board in 2018 and has led the JPA through challenging times, including the Covid pandemic and severe staffing shortages. His strategic planning, department-building efforts, and the strong relationships he has fostered have established a solid foundation for ongoing success. While we will miss Sean and his remarkable leadership, we are excited for him and his future endeavors. We are confident that the organization will continue to move in a positive direction under Tim Citro’s leadership. Chief Citro, with his strong ties to the community and extensive experience working alongside Chief Robertson, has the full confidence of the Board to lead Humboldt Bay Fire effectively into the future,” said Humboldt Bay Fire Board of Directors Chair Jo Wattle.  

Humboldt Bay Fire Board of Directors has selected Battalion Chief Tim Citro as the new Fire Chief, succeeding Fire Chief Sean Robertson. Citro will serve as Interim Fire Chief from September 1 through December 29 and will assume the role of Fire Chief starting December 30.  

Battalion Chief Citro brings over 30 years of Fire and EMS experience, beginning his career at the age of 14 as a Fire Explorer and Reserve Firefighter with the Healdsburg Fire Department. He later relocated to Humboldt County to attend Cal Poly Humboldt, where he joined the Arcata Volunteer Fire Department. After earning his degree, he worked for City Ambulance of Eureka as an EMT-1 and completed his Paramedic training. 

In 1999, he was hired as a Firefighter/Paramedic with the Peninsula Fire District in Lake Almanor, California. A year later, he joined Humboldt No. 1 Fire Protection District, where he has dedicated 25 years, serving in various roles, including Firefighter, Engineer, Captain, Captain/Duty Officer, and Battalion Chief. 

Citro holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geography with a Minor in Geology from Cal Poly Humboldt. He is certified by the California State Board of Fire Services as a Fire Officer and Chief Officer, is a California Licensed Paramedic, and is a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program. 

He has been married to his wife Lauri for 26 years, and they have two adult daughters, Molly and Allissa. He enjoys spending time with his family, traveling, and playing golf in his free time. 

“I’m excited for the opportunity to lead the men and women of Humboldt Bay Fire as the next Fire Chief,” Citro said. “I am committed to ensuring that Humboldt Bay Fire continues to add value to the community and improve the quality of life for our customers by delivering the highest level of EMS, Rescue, and Fire services.”  

Humboldt Bay Fire extends its heartfelt gratitude to Chief Sean Robertson for his 26 years of exemplary service. His leadership and commitment have significantly shaped the department, and we wish him all the best in his retirement. Chief Robertson “Would like to deeply thank Humboldt Bay Fire for the great privilege and honor of leading and working with such an incredible group of people who inspired me every day through their dedication, professionalism, and commitment to making our community a better place”.


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