Ernest Mitchell, Jr. is the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s U.S. Fire Administrator for the U.S. Fire Administration. He began his tenure on December 5, 2011 and is responsible for managing the U.S. Fire Administration and the programs and training activities at the National Emergency Training Center.
Chief Mitchell retired as the Fire Chief and Assistant Director of Disaster Emergency Services for the City of Pasadena, California Fire Department after 33 years in the fire service. Chief Mitchell was an active member and former officer of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC). During his last year in Pasadena he was also President of the IAFC, where he continued until the completion of his term. He served in Pasadena from 1998 until 2004. Before becoming Fire Chief in Pasadena, Chief Mitchell served as Fire Chief and Deputy City Manager in the City of Monrovia, California for seven years.
In previous years he served as a member of the International Fire Service Training Association Executive Board, the International Association of Firefighters Hazardous Materials Advisory Board, the IAFC President’s Council, the IAFC Foundation Board, the IAFC/IAFF Labor/Management Initiative Facilitator Team, the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Advisory Committee and presided over several fire service organizations, including: the Los Angeles Area Fire Chiefs Association, the League of California Cities Fire Chiefs and the Foothill Fire Chiefs. He has also been an Advocate for the National Fallen Firefighters’ Everyone Goes Home Program, an adjunct instructor for the National Fire Academy and a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of Fire Chief Magazine.
Chief Mitchell has an Associate of Science Degree in Fire Science from Long Beach City College, a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Public Administration Degree from California State University at Northridge.
He is a past recipient of the IAFC President’s Award for Service. In 2012 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Association of Black Professional Firefighters Black Chief Officers Committee. Most recently, Chief Mitchell was inducted into the Long Beach City College Hall of Fame for his outstanding achievements as a leader in fire safety at the local and national level and for his service as the nation’s top fire chief. Chief Mitchell also received the prestigious California Community College Distinguished Alumni Award presented to alumni who are accomplished professionals and citizens of their respective communities.