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Date: Apr 12, 2019

Joanne Rund will serve as the county’s first permanent female fire chief

County Executive Johnny Olszewski today nominated individuals to fill several key roles on his leadership team. He has nominated:

  • Joanne Rund – Fire Chief
  • C. Pete Gutwald – Director of Planning
  • David Lykens – Director of Environmental Protection and Sustainability
  • Ed Blades – Acting Director of Budget and Finance

“We are working to make Baltimore County more innovative, transparent, and responsive to the needs of residents and communities, and that requires assembling a top notch leadership team. These individuals will play a critical role in our efforts to build a better Baltimore County together,” Olszewski said.

Rund joins Baltimore County after serving for 32 years with the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services, most recently as Howard County’s Assistant Chief of The Bureau Occupational Safety & Health. She brings decades of experience in the emergency services field in a career/volunteer combination system. Before joining the fire service in 1987, Rund served as a volunteer Emergency Services Provider (EMS) in Carroll County. She holds numerous certifications in the field of health and safety, has obtained the National Fire Academy’s Advanced Safety Officer Program certification, and serves as Associate Faculty at the University of Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute, and Region III Coordinator for the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Advocacy programs. Rund is the first permanent female Fire Chief in Baltimore County’s history.

Gutwald joins Baltimore County following decades of planning and land use experience. He most recently served as Director of Planning and Zoning for the City of Annapolis, following nearly 10 years of service as the Director of Planning and Zoning for Harford County. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies from the University of Maryland and a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Baltimore.

Lykens has served as the department’s acting director since December 2018, after previously serving as deputy director since December 2014. He has worked in Baltimore County since 1988, starting as a Natural Resource Specialist before working his way up to Director. Lykens holds bachelor’s degrees in Biology and Natural Science and a master’s degree in Biology from Towson University.

Blades will serve as acting director of Budget and Finance following the retirement of Keith Dorsey, who has served in the role for 35 years. Blades has worked in Baltimore County government since 1993, beginning in the Office of Budget and Finance as a Budget Analyst and has served as deputy budget director since 2012. In that capacity he has implemented various budget and financial software system upgrades and developed reporting structures to generate efficiencies in data collection and analysis. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from UMBC and a MBA from the University of Phoenix. 


Revised September 11, 2017