Occupation:New York City Fire Commisioner
Superman Hall of Heroes inductee Salvatore J. Cassano is a true hero in his community. Over the course of his career working for the New York City Fire Department (FDNY), he has been recognized multiple times for his bravery and commitment to his country. He notably helped lead the department through the tragedy of Sept. 11 and played a crucial role in rebuilding the Department in the wake of the event.
Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano has 40 years of experience at the FDNY and has held every uniformed rank. On January 1, 2010, he was appointed Fire Commissioner by former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. He is the 32nd Fire Commissioner in the FDNY’s 145-year history.
Commissioner Cassano heads the world’s largest fire department with more than 16,000 fire, EMS and civilian members and an annual budget of $1.6 billion.
Prior to his appointment by former Mayor Bloomberg, Commissioner Cassano served as the FDNY’s Chief of Department -- the highest-ranking uniformed officer - from 2006 through 2010, overseeing many of the agency’s most important bureaus including Fire and EMS Operations, Training, Safety, Fire Prevention and Communications. From 2001 to 2006, he served as Chief of Operations -- a position he was appointed to immediately after Sept. 11, 2001.
Both as Chief of Operations and Chief of Department, Commissioner Cassano played a crucial role in rebuilding the Department in the wake of Sept. 11 and the loss of 343 members of the Department. In the years that followed, more than 6,000 new firefighters were hired and 3,000 others promoted to various officer ranks as the Department went through a difficult but remarkable resurgence. Not only is the FDNY better equipped, trained and prepared than ever before in its history, it has also achieved unprecedented success with the fewest civilian fire fatalities ever and the fastest response times on record.
Throughout Commissioner Cassano’s extraordinary career, he has been cited five times for bravery, each time for rescuing New Yorkers from burning buildings.
Prior to joining the FDNY, Commissioner Cassano served in the U.S. Army from October 1965 through July 1967 and was deployed to Vietnam in September 1966. While a firefighter, he attended John Jay College of Criminal Justice and received a Bachelor of Science in Fire Science.