Background Photo Provided by the
Nebraska Tourism Commission
Offical Nebraska Government Website
Office of Governor Pete Ricketts

Gov. Ricketts Names State Fire Marshal

Media Contacts:  

Taylor Gage, 402-471-1970

Eric Maher, 402-471-1974




LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts named Christopher Cantrell of Lincoln as the next State Fire Marshal. 


“From regulating power plants to boiler inspections, Chris brings two decades of experience in applying safety codes as our next State Fire Marshal,” said Governor Ricketts.  “The Fire Marshal has a critical role in protecting public safety, and Chris’ leadership will build on the great work this agency has been doing.”


Cantrell, 47, has served as Safety Division Director for the Nebraska Department of Labor since 2014 and Program Manager for the Boiler Inspection Program since 2007.  There he has overseen operations of safety-related programs as well as managed operations of a statewide inspection program that regulates the construction, installation, inspection, and repair of boilers and pressure vessels.


“As Fire Marshal, my objective will be to work towards Governor Ricketts’ mission to deliver better service for the people of Nebraska,” said Cantrell.  “Thank you to the Governor for the opportunity to serve, and I look forward to putting my experience in safety and inspection programs to work in this new role.”


Prior to working for the Department of Labor, Cantrell was an Authorized Nuclear Inspector at The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company.  Before working in the private sector, Cantrell served in the United States Navy as a Surface Ship Nuclear Propulsion Plant Operator.


Cantrell holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in University Studies with focuses on communications, management, and organizational leadership.  He is certified Lean Six Sigma Executive Green Belt.


Cantrell’s first day as State Fire Marshal will be Monday, October 15, 2018.  His salary will be $105,000.  He will also continue in his roles as Safety Division Director and Boiler Inspection Program Manager for the Nebraska Department of Labor.


This appointment follows news that State Fire Marshal Jim Heine would retire effective September 30, 2018.  Heine has served the state for 29 years.


Doug Hohbein will serve as interim director in the intervening period of time.