Dawson’s former Chief of Emergency Services named Battalion Chief in Habersham


Former Dawson County Emergency Services Director Lanier Swafford has accepted a job as Battalion Chief in Habersham County. 

Habersham Emergency Services Director Chad Black today announced Swafford’s appointment.

Swafford began his career as a volunteer fireman in Dawson  County in 1989. He served as fire chief and, later, chief of emergency services after Dawson County merged its Fire and E.M.S. departments.

Chief Swafford resigned this past May when Dawson County restructured its emergency services department.

Black says Swafford “brings invaluable experience to our department.” Swafford is a certified Emergency Manager for Georgia. He’s also already been through an emergency services merger similar to what Habersham County is now experiencing. [Habersham merged its Fire and E.M.S. departments in March.]

Credentials and character

Chief Swafford holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree from Waldorf College. He also has Applied Science Degrees in Health Studies and Fire Science from Lanier Technical College.

In addition to his education and nearly thirty years of experience, Swafford comes with highly regarded professional credentials. He’s the past president of the Georgia State Firefighters Association. He currently serves as chairman of the Region II Emergency Medical Services Council and Region II EMS Advisory Council.

Chief Swafford was appointed by the Speaker of the House to the Georgia Firefighters Standards and Training Council. He served as chairman of that board from 2014-2018. He’s also a member of the Georgia Association of Emergency Medical Services and Region II EMS Directors Association.

“We are very fortunate to get someone (with the) character, experience, knowledge and leadership qualities as Chief Swafford,” Black tells Now Habersham. “He brings a reputation of honesty, dedication and high respect from around the state of Georgia among his peers and state leaders.”

Swafford will oversee B Shift Operations for HCES. He starts his new job on July 30th.

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