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David Cash

Distinguished Alumni May 2008

David Cash is a life-long resident of Polk County and is currently serving as the Chief of the Polk County Fire Department, a position he has held since July 2005.

David is a graduate of Lake Wales High School, class of 1972. He received his Associate of Arts degree in Education in 1976 and his Associate of Science degree in Fire Science in 1979. David obtained his Bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida in 1992.

David worked as a volunteer firefighter in Lake Wales from 1973 until 1980. In 1976 he became the 10th firefighter hired by the Polk County Fire Department and moved up the ranks to Lieutenant (1979), Captain (1984), and Deputy Chief (1987). From 1988 to 1991, he served as Polk County Public Safety Coordinator, where he helped guide the operation of the County Fire Service, Emergency Medical Service, Civil Defense Division, Animal Control Division, and Communications Division. From 1991 to 2005, he served as the Emergency Management Director, where he directed the activities of five emergency-related divisions including 911 Call Centers, Emergency Management (which handled the 2004 hurricanes under David’s watch), Dispatch, and Communications.

As Polk County Fire Chief, David oversees a paid staff of 240, approximately 100 volunteer firefighters, 30 fire stations, and a $30 million dollar budget. Polk County is the 65th largest department in the United States, according to Firehouse Magazine.

David is a graduate of the Leadership Lake Wales program, a board member at the Lake Wales Care Center, and a member of Lake Wales First Baptist Church.

David has been married to his wife Kim for 30 years, and they have two children, Amanda and Connor.