New principal hired for Arkansas Fire Training Academy

A new principal has been hired at the Arkansas Fire Training Academy in Camden.

Southern Arkansas University Tech announced that Andy Woody — a 25-year veteran of the firefighting profession, which includes time as a fire chief in Searcy and Columbia, Mo. — will be the new director. He will replace Academy Director Rachel Nix, who is retiring.

The Academy provides professional education and training in firefighting, hazardous materials, and emergency medical services and certifies fire service personnel.

Woody holds a master’s degree in administration. He is a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer program and is accredited as a Chief of Training and Fire Chief by the Center for Public Safety Excellence. He is a member of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and serves as the elected Chief Executive of the Safety, Health and Survival Section.

Arkansas Fire Training Academy Deputy Principal James Rubow celebrated his retirement with staff Jan. 27. Nix will leave in March. James Goodwin replaces James Rubow as assistant manager.

Nix served with the Arkansas Fire Training Academy from 1980 to 2022 and Rubow from 2001 to 2022.

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