Fire Chief

Fire Chief 2023 PictureZackary Riddle, MPA, CFO, NRP
Fire Chief 
Village of Oak Lawn Fire Department


Zackary Riddle serves as the Fire Chief of the Village of Oak Lawn Fire Department located in Oak Lawn, Illinois.  Service to the Village began in 2018 as Deputy Chief of Operations and Training with promotion to Fire Chief in 2020.  Chief Riddle has proudly served as a member of fire departments, in every rank, throughout the Illinois Fire Service for 31 years. During these years, he has also served as a fire service leadership instructor for various organizations, fire academies, departments and districts throughout our United States, Illinois and the Chicago Metropolitan area. Chief Riddle believes that leadership is a skill that can be learned within all disciplines of fire suppression, special operations and emergency medical service.  Future success depends upon leadership development, at all ranks, focused on a common organizational mission, vision and values.

Zack is also the Director and President of the Illinois Society of Fire Service Instructors.  The Society is a non-profit organization focused on delivering training, education, and professional development to fire service leaders pursuing qualification and certification as training officers, program managers and fire instructors.  Along with several professional certifications, Zack has a Master of Public Administration degree from Governors State University, United States Army Command and General Staff College graduate and a Bachelor of Science with honors from the University of Iowa.  He is a graduate of the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association Chief Fire Officer program.  Chief Zackary Riddle holds the certification, qualification and designation as a Chief Fire Officer, awarded through the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal.

Lieutenant Colonel Z.W. Riddle has served our nation as both soldier and officer in the United States Army Reserve and Illinois Army National Guard spanning a total of 34 years. He served combat tours as a Headquarters Company Commander during Operation Iraqi Freedom 1 and 2.  Pending his retirement, he is now assigned to the Deputy Commanding General’s Staff of the 81st Readiness Division, Fort Jackson, South Carolina. His previous assignments include Executive Officer of the 303rd Maneuver Enhancement Brigade (MEB), Director Individual Training – 9th Mission Support Command, Deputy Director Operations/ Training (ILNG), and an Assistant Professor of Military Science at Northern IL University where he instructed, mentored and professionally developed soldiers as they trained to become United States Army Officers.