According to a news release on Tuesday, the city of Battle Creek has a tapped a Michigan native to be its new fire chief. David Schmaltz will assume the position effective Feb. 3. Schmaltz comes to the Cereal City from Defiance, Ohio where he served as the city’s fire chief since Nov. 2010.

Schmaltz has more than 20 years of experience. He graduated from Clawson High School and says he's excited to be returning to Michigan, locating only 30 minutes from where he started his fire service career 20 years ago in Coldwater.

The position of fire chief was held previously by Larry Hausman, who retired in April of 2013 after nearly 40 years of service with the Battle Creek Fire Department and 15 years as chief.