Assistant Chief Michael Popovich joined the City of Madison Fire Department in March 1988. He has served as a firefighter, Apparatus Engineer, and Division Chief. Popovich was promoted to Assistant Chief of Personnel, Planning & Training on January 8, 2012. In January 2017 he became the Assistant Chief of Support Services. He also has worked as a Training Officer and Chief's Aide during his career.
Chief Popovich earned a B.S. in Public Administration from Upper Iowa University with a Minor in Fire Science. He is certified as a PADI diver and Hazardous Materials Technician. He also has been certified as a Fire Officer IV and Fire Instructor.
Through 2009, Chief Popovich served as a Fire Chief in the U.S. Air Force Reserves. He retired as E-9 Chief Master Sergeant after a 27-year commitment.
Ché Stedman has been a member of the Madison Fire Department since 1996. He has served as a Firefighter, Paramedic, Lieutenant, Training Captain, and Division Chief, as well as participating as a special teams member of the Heavy Urban Rescue Team and Lake Rescue Team. He is currently the Assistant Chief of Medical Affairs.
Stedman began his fire service career in the Wisconsin Air National Guard in 1992. He served 21 years, retiring as a Chief Master Sergeant. He is a combat veteran with two tours of duty in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Ché holds a master's degree in Rehabilitation Psychology from the UW-Madison, a bachelor's degree in Psychology and an associate's degree in Fire Science. In addition, he is an IFSAC Fire Instructor II and Fire Officer IV.
Assistant Chief Art Price leads the Operations Division of the MFD. Price joined the MFD in 1990 and served as a Firefighter, Training Officer, Lieutenant, and Division Chief. As Assistant Chief of Operations, Price oversees the department’s long-term planning of departmental and inter-departmental programs and services. In addition to analyzing call response data, Price coordinates the development and ongoing implementation of the department’s standard operating guidelines and policies and procedures. Price also oversees the Madison Fire Department’s Fire Prevention Division.
Assistant Fire Chief Tracy Burrus started her firefighting career in Macomb, IL as a fulltime Firefighter/EMT in 1995. She was hired by the Madison Fire Department on October 15, 2001.
Prior to achieving the rank of Assistant Fire Chief, she held the following ranks and has been a member of the following special teams: Division Chief of Fire Training, Fire Lieutenant, Apparatus Engineer, Firefighter, Rapid Intervention Team member, Hazardous Materials satellite team member, Training Officer, and Heavy Urban Rescue Team member. She has also contributed as a member of the Safety, Recruitment, and Peer Support Committees.
Assistant Chief Burrus is originally from Saratoga Springs, NY. She moved to the Midwest after serving four years with the U.S. Army as a diesel mechanic and achieving the rank of Sergeant/E5. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology/Psychology from Western Illinois University.
When off-duty, she enjoys spending time with her family and working on home improvement projects.
Division Chief Timothy Mrowiec started his firefighting career in Byron, IL as a paid on-call Firefighter/Paramedic. In 1994 he was hired as a firefighter by the Madison Fire Department. His career at the MFD has included a number of promotions, including Apparatus Engineer, Chief’s Aide, Lieutenant, and Training Captain.
He was promoted to Division Chief in February 2014. As the Division Chief of Special Operations, Mrowiec oversees Madison Fire Department’s special teams: Hazardous Incident Team, Heavy Urban Rescue Team, and Lake Rescue Team. Chief Mrowiec’s duties also include Resource Management, ensuring the Department’s resources (e.g. equipment, inventory, budget, etc.) are maintained and deployed in the most efficient and effective way.
Division Chief Paul Ripp joined the fire service in 1990. Since that time, he's held the positions of Firefighter, Apparatus Engineer (promoted in 2001), Fire Lieutenant (promoted in 2009), and Fire Captain (appointed in 2013). He served as a Captain of Fire Training and Fire Investigator beginning in 2014 before being promoted to Division Chief in 2016. Ripp has served on the MFD’s Hazardous Incident Team, Rapid Intervention Team, and Heavy Urban Rescue Team. He studied at UW-Madison, Madison College, and Columbia Southern University. He’s a Madison native and has four children.
Division Chief Scott Bavery was born and raised in the City of Madison. He started serving the community as a Madison Firefighter in 1997. Division Chief Bavery has held positions within the Department as Firefighter, Paramedic, Training Officer, Fire Lieutenant, and Fire Captain. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Community Health Education and a Masters Degree in Emergency Management Services. Division Chief Bavery has been involved with Lake Rescue, the Hazardous Incident Team, and Tactical Emergency Medicine Services. Chief Bavery is a former Hazmat State Coordinator and was a lead instructor for four MFD recruit academies.
Division Chief Jerome Buechner started his firefighting career in 1988 as a volunteer firefighter and has worked for three professional departments. He joined Madison Fire Department in February 2000 and has held the positions of Firefighter, Apparatus Engineer, Lieutenant, and Training Captain. Jerome served as a Rapid Intervention Team member and Heavy Urban Rescue Team member. He also contributed to the Safety and Mentorship Committees for the department. Jerome conducted his studies at Madison College and Scottsdale Community College.
As Division Chief of Health & Wellness, he oversees the annual medical exams for the department and coordinates light duty personnel. Chief Buechner is also the Fire Department Safety Officer, leads the Fire Investigation Division, and is responsible for tracking protective equipment and coordinating firefighter skill assessments.
Division Chief Liza Tatar joined the Madison Fire Department in 2005 and has previously served as a Firefighter, Apparatus Engineer, Lieutenant, and Training Officer. She has been a member of the MFD’s Heavy Urban Rescue Team and Lake Rescue Team and remains active with the MFD and City of Madison Women’s Equity Committees. Liza holds a degree in Public Administration from Upper Iowa University and studied sociology at the University of Virginia. As Division Chief of Hiring and Promotions, she oversees the department’s recruitment and promotional processes. As the department’s Equity Coordinator, she also works to continuously ensure fair and equitable hiring and promotional practices so the department has a qualified and diverse workforce at all levels of the organization.
As Division Chief of Hiring and Promotions, she oversees the department’s firefighter selection and promotional processes. As the department’s Equity Coordinator, she also works to continuously ensure fair and equitable hiring and promotional practices so the department has a qualified and diverse workforce at all levels of the organization. Chief Tatar also manages the grant programs for the agency.
Division Chief Chris Carbon began his career in the fire service as a volunteer in 1992 and joined his first career department in 1997. He has been with the City of Madison Fire Department since 1999 and has enjoyed serving in the roles of a Firefighter, Paramedic, Lieutenant, and Training Officer. He was also lucky to be one of the inaugural members of the Tactical EMS team. As a local Badger, he holds a Bachelor’s degree in Zoology from the UW-Madison and an Associate’s degree in Paramedicine from Madison College. He spends his time away from work with his wife and three children.
As the Division Chief of EMS Training and Logistics, he oversees the initial and ongoing continuing education programming for the EMTs and Paramedics of the department. Patient-centered quality assurance and data collection are among the important tasks of this position, as well as the impactful work done by the Community Paramedic program. He also works with an amazing team in the EMS Division to ensure that the logistical supply and equipment needs of a busy pre-hospital medical delivery system are met.
Fire Marshal Ed Ruckriegel manages the fire prevention programs for the City of Madison Fire Department. Organized around the three Es: Education, Engineering & Enforcement, the Fire Prevention Division includes the Code Enforcement Unit, the Community Education Unit and the Fire Protection Engineering Unit. The Division has also expanded services to include an Elevator Inspection Unit.
Ed started his fire service career as a volunteer firefighter in 1979. After receiving a Bachelor of Science in Fire and Safety Engineering Technology, he worked as a Fire Protection Engineer for the City of Las Vegas Fire Department, joining the Madison Fire Department in a similar capacity in 1990. He was promoted to Fire Marshal in 1994.