Evanston Fire Division Chief Tom Janetske is retiring from a 26 year career with the department.

Janetske joined the department in 1989 and was promoted to division chief of the Fire Prevention Bureau and the city’s emerency preparedness manager in 2008.

“Tom’s knowledge in the areas of fire prevention, life safety code enforcement and all hazards planning will be missed,” Fire Chief Greg Klaiber said in a statement. “I relied on Tom’s expertise and acumen in each of these areas and I appreciate all that he has done for the Evanston Fire Department and the City of Evanston throughout his distinguished career.”

Janetske’s last day with the city will be Sept. 4 and the department will hold a retirement ceremony for him at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 3 at fire headquarters at 909 Lake Street. 

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Division Chief Tom Janetske
    Chief Janetske has been the charismatic leader of the Community Emergency Response Team for Evanston. We joined the Team in 2010 and have spent 5 years serving the city through participation in the the Recycling Fair, the 4th of July Parade and Fire Works, Bike the Ridge, Call Box Testing, traffic control after storm damage, providing community presence on the streets during the power outages after storms, training for emergency response etc. We have been honored to serve our community under the leadership of Chief Janetske and his team. We wish him well.

  2. Is he off to collect another pension?
    Will he go work for a different municipality so that he can collect a double pension? Or is he done working at around the age of 50? Either way, it’s just another burden that us taxpayers are forced to pay.

    1. Are you kidding me?
      Hey Ed, the man worked 26 years as a dedicated firefighter for the city. He deserves his pension. You sound like a bitter man. Please crawl back under the rock you were under.

    2. but when you retire Ed it is

      but when you retire Ed it is ok for the tax payers to pay your social security oh and don't forget Medicare. That's all ok

    3. Pension Rates

      Pensions should be based on a 40-45 job life—like 20-65 or 25-65. And vested at a linear or somewhat linear rate. I.e. If you work 10 years at a particular job, your pension is 10/40 of what a full pension at 65 would be expected. Lets say that '65' pension is calculated by actuaries to be $3000 per month. Then the pension received by the 10 year worker would be 10/40 * $3000. Thus is would not matter when you retire or take another job. The next job would be calculated the same way—years work at job2/40 * full term pension estimated for that company. Anyone expecting to work to 50 and retire with full-benefits and never having to work again is fooling themselves and if in the public sector taking advantage of taxpayers. Even football players realize they won't play until 65, so plan for post-football jobs. Like getting an MBA or JD while playing. As a matter of fact anyone in private or public jobs who is not considering what their next job—and preparing the skills for it—is fooling themselves.

      1. Pension

        Dear Guest:  Did you ever walk into a burning building, save a life, walk into a robbery in progress, get spit on, bled on, physically assaulted, shot at, work miserable hours, holidays and weekends,miss significant family events?  Unless you walk a mile in a Police or Firemans shoes you really shouldn't be commenting on severely cutting their pensions.  They were promised this for doing a thankless job for 20-30 years. Your voodo math is ridiculous and insulting.



        1. Pensions

          People in public service deserve them…after reading Pat's synopsis of what their jobs are like…….many job positions don't offer any such benefits, making people solely rely on Social Security or getting other jobs…..which is totally a bummer, but where would we all be without police and firefighters?

  3. Serving the public

    Anyone who says a public servant, especially the police or fire service doesn't deserve what they signed up pension-wise is selfish and has view that is skewed.

    Police and fire personnel generally live less than the regular population due to the stress of rotating shifts, job demands and exposures of the constant dissatisfaction of the dedicated service they provide.

    1. Give me a break

      Public employees in Evanston are treated very well and appreciated.  I didn't realize they lived shorter lives due to the exposure to  constant dissatisfaction of the dedicated service they provide.  Please do share your data on this.  Maybe we should lower the able bodied retirement age with full pension to 45 based on your information?  Everyone else who lives longer lives can work into their 90's to pay for it!

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