07/12/2012 07:58 EDT | Updated 09/11/2012 05:12 EDT

Toronto recruits new fire chief from Barrie

Toronto has a new fire chief.

The city announced Thursday that James (Jim) Sales had been named as the new fire chief.

Sales has 27 years of experience and has served as the general manager of community operations for the City of Barrie since 2008.

Before that, Sales was the commissioner of community and fire services in Markham from 2001-2008 and previous to that, the fire chief for the same city from 2000-2001.

He was the fire chief for the City of Edmonton from 1998-2000.

Sales started off his career as a firefighter and EMS responder.

In a statement, Sales said he was proud to take on the job as Toronto’s fire chief and wants to help improve its services.

Mayor Rob Ford said that the city welcomes Sales and looks forward to working with him.

Sales takes over a position that was left vacant by the recent retirement of Bill Stewart.

Stewart finished his career with Toronto Fire Services on April 30, after leading the department for nine years.