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Scottsdale Fire Culture

A group of more than 20 Scottsdale Fire Department employees spent several months defining the type of culture we desire. Here is an excerpt from that document to help you better decide if we are the kind of place you'd like to call home for the next 20-plus years:



Moral Courage

As we developed the pillars of our culture, a common theme persisted. Moral courage became the key that connected statements about how our culture should be with ideas on how we are going to get there. What is moral courage?
Moral courage is Rosa Parks keeping her seat on the bus. Moral courage is Gandhi resisting the human response of violence when confronted with violence. In short, moral courage is the confidence to show other people what you believe in. It is the internal strength to do the "difficult right" instead of the "easy wrong" or look the other way. Your expression of moral courage doesn't have to rise to the level of a Rosa Parks or Gandhi demonstration to have real value in the organization.

Pick any one of the characteristics listed on the pages that follow and think of a time when that characteristic was publicly disgraced, yet nobody said a word. There are a thousand excuses for why that happened, but only one true reason: all the players lacked the moral courage to salvage the situation.

We seek to be an organization of voices. Calm, rational, supportive, and guiding voices that lead us to an enlightened state. To some, this may sound like a silly thing for a Fire Department to work toward - it just depends on how great you want to make this place and how much effort you're willing to put into it.


We are always respectful. There is no circumstance that should prevent this behavior. There is no assignment, position, rank, or classification immune from this right. Everyone is deserving of respect.

The characteristics of Scottsdale Fire respect include:

  • Acceptance
  • Active Listening
  • Patience
  • Humility


We promote the leadership potential in every member of our family. Leadership is distinct from rank or title. The stability of this Department relies on developing and championing the leader in every person.

The characteristics of Scottsdale Fire leadership include:

  • Trust
  • Listening with respect
  • Professional conduct
  • Accepting risk
  • Knowledge and wisdom


We foster an environment that encourages open participation from every member of our organization. Ultimately, we are one.

The characteristics of Scottsdale Fire unity include:

  • Synergy
  • Participative management
  • Focus
  • Support


We are dedicated to continually exceeding service expectations: internally and externally. Excellence in service is our starting point.

The characteristics of Scottsdale Fire service include:

  • Persistence
  • The little things mean so much
  • Serving you
  • Start with internal service



We are an organization built on solid character. Our daily behaviors define our character.

The characteristics of Scottsdale Fire character include:

  • Integrity
  • Honesty
  • Accountability
  • Decision-making
  • Compassion and empathy
  • Sense of humor
  • Appreciation

Last Update August 2006

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