Christopher Ward, who began his emergency services career in 2004 as an IRV paramedic for Orange County, will return to Orange County Emergency Services in August as its new Division Chief of Emergency Communications (911). Ward has served for the last 13 years in Richmond, Va., as an Emergency Communications Supervisor for the Richmond Ambulance Authority and the City of Richmond Department of Emergency Communications, Preparedness and Response.
As Division Chief, Ward will be responsible for the daily oversight of Orange County’s only 911 center. Annually, this center answers and processes an average of 200,000 emergency and non-emergency calls, dispatches for all public safety agencies within the county, and coordinates various forms of support for those in need.
“Chris brings a wealth of experience as a public safety telecommunicator, communications supervisor, tactical dispatch team leader, and technology project manager,” said Orange County Emergency Services Director Kirby Saunders. “He was instrumental in the implementation of Richmond’s structured calltaking protocol system and crisis-call 911 diversion program.”
Ward is a 2004 graduate from George Washington University with a B.S. in Emergency Services Management. He maintains numerous professional certifications, including all International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED) disciplines, IAED Communications Center Manager, CALEA Communication Center Accreditation Manager, Crisis Intervention Team, and Paramedic. He was named 911RVA’s Supervisor of the Year in 2020 for his exceptional leadership qualities and abilities.
Ward’s first day with the county will be Aug. 14, 2023.