Fire Chief – Nick Swinhart was hired as the Fire Chief of the Camas-Washougal Fire Department on July 5th, 2011. In November of 2016 he was appointed as the Fire Chief of East County Fire and Rescue through an administrative sharing agreement.  The Fire Chief is responsible for managing all aspects of fire district operations. Duties include: budget preparation, representing the department at commission meetings, establishing policies and procedures, training guidelines, personnel issues, long range planning, attending county chief meetings, ambulance advisory and workshop meetings and other duties as assigned by the Board of Commissioners.

Chief Nick Swinhart was born and raised in Washington State. He started in the fire service in 1989 as a volunteer firefighter in his hometown of Montesano. He became a paramedic in 1992 and spent most of his career with the Aberdeen Fire Department. During this period of time he served as an elected city councilman in Montesano where he was assigned to the public safety committee.  In 2009 he was hired as the fire chief of Watertown, South Dakota, where he was also the president of the South Dakota Fire Chiefs Association. In 2011 Chief Swinhart returned home to Washington as the fire chief of the Camas-Washougal Fire Department.

Chief Swinhart earned an Associates Degree in Emergency Medical Services from Tacoma Community College and a Bachelors Degree in Emergency Medical Services Management from the George Washington University. He is a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer Program and has been designated as a Chief Fire Officer by The Center for Public Safety Excellence.

In his spare time, Nick is a runner and mountain climber, having been a member of expeditions to Antarctica, Russia, Africa, and South America. He, his wife Anna, and their daughters make their home in Camas.


Deputy Chief – Michael Carnes has 20 years’ experience in the field of emergency response. He grew up in Eastern Oregon and attended Blue Mountain Community College in Pendleton Ore. Michael started his career in the fire service as a Volunteer Firefighter for Clark County Fire District 1 in December 1997. He was promoted to Volunteer Firefighter Captain in 2001. Michael was then hired by East County Fire and Rescue to a fulltime Firefighter Captain position in December of 2006.  In 2011 Michael was promoted to Division Chief in charge of training and held that position for 1.5 years until he was reassigned to his Captain position due to lack of funding.  Michael was promoted in November 2017 to Deputy Fire Chief and is responsible for administration, operations and training.  Michael and his wife Cathy have 3 grown daughters.

Support Staff 

Linda Durrett, Administrative Specialist

Iliana Ortega, Accounting Assistant