Twinsburg fire department promotes three to lieutenant

Each shift will now be headed by one captain and two lieutenants

April Helms
Kent Weeklies
From left, Christopher Sorm, Brian Laughlin, and Joseph D’Ambrosia were promoted to lieutenants in the fire department. They were sworn in late last month.

TWINSBURG – The fire department is working on building its cadre of leaders by doubling the number of lieutenants who will be working on each shift.

Three firefighters were promoted to lieutenant in a swearing-in ceremony at the fire station on Aug. 25.

With the promotion of Brian Laughlin, Joseph D’Ambrosia and Christopher Sorm to these leadership positions, the fire department will now have one captain and two lieutenants in each of the department’s three shifts. They were sworn in by Mayor Ted Yates.

“Over the years I have had the pleasure of being a shift supervisor for all three of these gentlemen, and I’m excited to be able to witness their growth into the same role that help to develop my fire officer skill sets,” said Steve Bosso, assistant fire chief and CIO. “Brian, Chris and Joe are all very personable and liked by our entire department.  They’re all well-read and educated about the fire & EMS services and along with being tasked with enforcing department policies.”

Bosso said the three new lieutenants, who join three existing lieutenants with the department, will be “operating emergencies using our standards.”

“I have no doubts that they will thrive at this, but they are also encouraged to be innovative and seek out better solutions, all while now being a mentor to the rest of their shifts,” Bosso said. “It’s a pretty daunting task at first, but I know all three very well, and they will adapt to their new positions with ease.”

Fire Chief Tim Morgan said that adding the three officers will add flexibility to the department, as well as build on the department's leadership. 

"The assignment gives us individuals who can saddle some additional responsibility on a day-to-day basis, and who can serve in a command position in an emergency," Morgan said.

Morgan said there were many facets to running a fire department, such as keeping track of equipment and apparatus, regulatory measures, training, the health of personnel and station maintenance. 

"It’s so helpful to have people you can assign to help with parts of that and carry the load," Morgan said. 

In addition, regulations require there be at least one officer on each shift, Morgan said. The additional lieutenants will provide flexibility in scheduling vacations, sick leave and training.

Morgan said the three new lieutenants are "quality individuals."

Laughlin, the most senior of the three, joined the department as a full-time firefighter/paramedic in 1993. A resident of Hudson, he and his wife Janine of 26 years own Healthy Core Wellness & Rehab in Hudson. They have three children. Nolan, 21, is a senior at John Carroll and is a member of the golf team. Abby, 18, is a freshman at The Ohio State University.  McKenna, 14, started her freshman year at Hudson High School. Laughlin likes to tend to his yard and, whenever possible, also enjoys watching his kids play sports, taking hikes, or getting away on a vacation to Marco Island, Fla.

Morgan said Laughlin "is one of the original outsiders to be hired in full-time" for the city of Twinsburg, and someone who has worked for the city nearly as long as the chief and assistant chief. 

Sorm started his career in Twinsburg as a part-time firefighter/paramedic in 1995 and was hired full-time in 1999. He has been married to his wife Ellen for 19 years, and they have three adult children. Hunter, 23, is a second lieutenant in the United States Space Force and is awaiting his active duty deployment orders. His twin brother Harrison is attending Dayton University School of Law. Kennedy, 20, is a sophomore at Stark State pursuing environmental biology studies. Sorm loves to travel to the beaches of The Outer Banks or head to Columbus and enjoy one of the many sports venues.  

Morgan said that Sorm was "well versed in operations and mechanically inclined," and had experience in teaching other firefighters operations such as driving the fire department vehicles.

D’Ambrosia started with the department in 2004 as a part time firefighter/paramedic and began his full-time service later that year. He has been married for 16 years to his wife Kelly, and they have three children. Taylor, 23, is a recent graduate from the University of Cincinnati, where she enjoyed being on the dance team. Olivia, 15, is a sophomore at North Royalton High School, where she participates in cheering. Joseph, 11, is a quarterback for his football team and catcher for baseball. D’Ambrosia enjoys fishing with his dad or spending time working on the yard.

Morgan said D'Ambrosia was  "a developing as a leader within the department who expressed a desire to take on more responsibility."

All three "have drive and desire and can be change makers," Morgan said.

"The fire service is constantly being remade, so we just need some creative minds and initiative," Morgan said. "We need to be leading edge and responsive to citizens. All this is ultimately to make sure we are effective in our response and we keep our people safe."

Lieutenant is a step above firefighter; captain is the next rank, followed by assistant chief and then chief.

There are 48 members of the fire department, 29 of the full-time members are medics, as are 13 of the part-time members. Nine firefighters are on duty for each 24-hour shift.

Reporter April Helms can be reached at ahelms@recordpub.com