WFD elects new officers 

GUILDERLAND — Westmere Fire Department has announced its new lineup of firematic and business officers, elected last month.  

Taking charge of the department’s fire-related work are: Anthony Carrow, chief; Timothy Playford, assistant chief; James Bornt, first captain; John Sokil, captain; Brian Luther, first lieutenant; and Michael Koff, Jason Paiko, and Nick Basile, all lieutenants. 

The officers in charge of business, fundraising, and social functions are: Barry Nelson, president; Jeff Manor, first vice-president; Steve Basile, second vice-president; Mark Topper, recording secretary; Don Burkett, treasurer; Ben Greenberg, financial secretary; and Tony Vogt, director. 

Many of these officers had held the same or a similar post in the past, according to President Barry Nelson. 

Although many fire departments throughout the state and the country are hurting for members, Nelson said, “Thankfully at Westmere, we are not.” 

Nelson credits the department’s location in Guilderland’s densely populated Westmere and its reputation as a “really good department” with helping to recruit and retain firefighters.

John Keimer, the department’s spokesman, said Westmere was “very blessed” in 2019 in terms of recruitment, with the number of active firefighters rising over the course of the year from about 50 to 60. 

“Lots of new faces around the firehouse,” Keimer said. 

— Elizabeth Floyd Mair 

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