Maryland State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci Retires After 50 Year Career

December 23, 2023

(L-R) Brian S. Geraci was presented a Superintendents Salute from James E. Hock Jr., Deputy Chief of Staff of Maryland State Police

State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci announced his retirement on December 21st, 2023, from the Office of the State Fire Marshal after a 50-year career, including ten years with the agency. Geraci’s announcement coincided with the agency’s holiday luncheon in Pikesville.

He was surrounded by his family, current and retired employees, including former and current police and fire chiefs, and other representatives from several fire prevention and life safety associations. 

Geraci was appointed State Fire Marshal by Maryland State Police Colonel Marcus L. Brown on August 14, 2013, after William E. Barnard, who served in the position since 2001. Under Geraci’s tenure, Maryland is considered a leader in the United States in fire prevention after working with legislators to ensure residential sprinklers for new homes and ten-year sealed battery smoke alarms and CO alarms in all existing homes and drafted successful legislation requiring non-arc-resistant jacketed CSST in all new homes and buildings.

Geraci had more than forty years of experience as a fire service professional. He spent over 30 years with the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service, spending 21 of those years in the Office of Fire Marshal before his retirement in 2006 as a Battalion Chief assigned to the county’s Homeland Security Department. He finished the last twelve years of his career in Montgomery County as the Assistant Fire Marshal.

Geraci continued his dedication to fire safety and prevention by transitioning into the private sector and serving on the Maryland State Fire Prevention Commission. In June 2010, Geraci accepted a position with the Office of Emergency Management in Arlington County, Virginia. Ten months later, he transferred to the fire department as the Coordinator for the Bomb Squad Unit.

As state fire marshal, Geraci oversaw a staff of nearly 70 employees, including more than 40 sworn deputy state fire marshals. Geraci has overseen numerous upgrades within the agency, including improving fire investigator safety by focusing on cancer prevention, and oversaw the purchasing and modernizing vehicles within the agency. He worked alongside the State Law Enforcement Labor Alliance (SLEOLA) in negotiating significant salary increases for sworn investigators and the civilian staff, spearheaded efforts on employees’ mental health issues, and sought training on this topic for all staff and their families.

“It has been an honor and privilege to have worked beside the finest men and women who have dedicated their lives to service for others. As I have said in the past, we are a small agency but a large family, and yes, we have had our moments both here at work and within our own families, and we supported each other during those difficult times,” stated Geraci 

State Fire Marshal Geraci has also served as vice president of the National Association of State Fire Marshals since 2017. He was awarded the American Fire Sprinkler Association (AFSA), Sprinkler Advocate of the Year award for 2020, and The Olin Greene Outstanding Fire Prevention Service Award by the National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM) this past August. 

“It has been a short ten years, but during this time, we have accomplished so much, and I am so proud of all of you who have made this journey an outstanding experience,” Geraci told staff today during the luncheon. 

Chief Deputy Jason M. Mowbray was designated as acting state fire marshal by Colonel Roland L. Butler, superintendent of the Maryland State Police. The selection process for a new state fire marshal will begin after the first of the year when the position is advertised. Candidate resumes will reviewed by the State Fire Prevention Commission. The top candidates will be forwarded to Colonel Butler, who will select the final candidate.  

Geraci is relocating to Florida and looks forward to spending time with his wife, Kelly, and their children and grandchildren.

His last day with the agency will be December 31, 2023.