Get to know our new Fire Chief this National First Responders Day
Chief Enrique (Rick) Rojas has learned how to stay cool under pressure. As Fire Chief for the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Aviation Division, he’s responsible for protecting the safety of MIA’s passengers, visitors and employees around the clock. Chief Rojas also ensures that our firefighters are trained and ready for any event they may encounter. This National First Responders Day, he shares what it’s like to manage fire rescue operations at one of the world’s busiest international airports.
How long have you been at MIA?
I have been at MIA since September 2018. I was the C-Shift Battalion Chief at Midfield Fire Station from September 2018 to March 2020. On April 1, 2020, I took over for Chief Gardner as MIA’s Fire Chief.
What do you like most about your job?
What I like most about my job is the ability to make a difference in people’s lives. Our goal is to keep everyone who visits our airport safe, and although I am not on the front lines anymore, my new position allows me to support our Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) team and continue making a difference behind the scenes.
What is your role at MIA?
As the Airport Fire Chief, I oversee anything related to aircraft rescue & firefighting, emergency medical services, hazardous materials, and structure firefighting emergency response. I also manage our fuel safety and life safety teams.
What are some of your biggest accomplishments at MIA?
Our team is one of the most well-respected teams in the ARFF industry. We set the standard for what others around the country try to emulate through hard work, training and dedication to our craft. I’d like to take credit for that, but the truth is our men and women are the best of the best, and they are the ones who make MIA one of the safest airports to visit in the world. We stepped up and navigated the COVID-19 pandemic as well and as courageously as anyone could during uncertain times. While the country was in lockdown and many were at home with family, we continued our mission to protect and serve our MIA community day in and day out. I am very proud of this truly extraordinary accomplishment.
How does it feel to be recognized on National First Responders Day?
I am honored to represent our incredible first responders on this very special day. It is incredibly humbling.