Charles was appointed Fire Chief of Winter Haven, Florida in April 1979 where he served for almost twenty years. During this period, Charles also served as Deputy City Manager. He served one year as Interim City Manager.
Charles began his career in the Fire Service in June 1962 after graduating from high school. He was trained as a USAF Fire Protection Specialist at the Air Force Fire Training School. Then he was assigned to Air Force Bases in Germany, Mississippi, Korea and Illinois. During his Air Force career he served as a Structural Firefighter, Aircraft Crash Rescue Specialist and Firefighter, a crash truck driver and fire crew chief, and a Fire Inspector. He was assigned to the Air Force Air and Sea Rescue Unit where he served as an Aerial Firefighter/Rescue on a HH-43B helicopter for 18 months. The last three years Charles served as a Fire Training Instructor at the Air Force Fire Training School in Illinois. After leaving the Air Force Charles went to work as a Firefighter at Walt Disney World Florida as a Firefighter and was upwardly promoted to Supervisor of Code Compliance (Fire Marshal). He then left Disney World RCID Fire department and became Fire chief Of the City of Winter Haven. He served the city of Winter Haven until his retirement.
Charles was awarded the Following College Degrees,
Master Degree, major, Public Administration from Troy University, Troy Alabama
Bachelor of Science, major, Business Administration, with Honors from Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida
Associate of Arts, concentration, Business Education from Polk State College, Winter Haven Florida
Associate of Science, concentration, Fire Science Technology, from Polk State College, Winter Haven Florida
Attended the University of South Florida, Tampa Florida was awarded a Graduate Certificate in Public Administration
Attended the University of South Florida, Graduate of Executive Fellows Leadership Program
AWARDS AND HONORS
Awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award from Polk State College, Winter Haven, Florinda, 1987