Fire Chief Ernesto Diaz is a community-minded fire service employee with over 30 years combined expertise in fire service and emergency response operations, strengthening community ties and creating safe environments. Effective communicator and relationship builder with a lead-by-example approach; committed to partnering with community groups and officials to understand complex issues, anticipate and respond to emergencies, facilitate positive change, and ensure continued excellent service to the residents he serves.
Fire Chief Ernesto Diaz has been with Cahuilla Fire Department since July of 2022 He previously served over 20 years with the City of National City Fire Department as an Acting Fire Battalion Chief, Fire Captain, Fire Engineer, and Firefighter. He began his fire service career in 1993 with the US Forest Service in Alpine, Ca (four fire seasons). and Miramar Fire Department.
His formal education includes an associate degree in Fire Protection Technology from Miramar Community College, Associates of Science Degree in Environmental Studies from Southwestern Community College and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Public Administration from The University of Phoenix. He is also a California State Fire Marshall Certified Fire Officer and Chief Officer.
Some of his professional accomplishments/career highlights are Wildland Coordinator for National City Fire Department, Hazardous Materials and Weapons of Mass Destruction Coordinator for National City Fire Department. Member of National City Rescue Committee and Health/Safety and Wellness Committee. Certified IAFF Peer Fitness Instructor. He developed the FFIT (Firefighter Friends in Training) Program, that entailed of off-duty firefighters attending National City School District elementary classes to speak about health and fitness to 5th and 6th graders. He held the position of Fire Academy Co-Coordinator in 2009 and 2022.