Buffalo Community Leader
As a life-long resident of Buffalo, NY, Garnell Whitfield is one of four children of the late Mrs. Ruth E. Whitfield and Garnell W. Whitfield Sr. who were married for 68 years before her untimely passing on May 14, 2022. His wife Cassietta and he have four children, Jamarr, Tiffany, Kamilah and Garnell lll; nine grandchildren and four great grandchildren. They celebrated their 38th wedding anniversary on June 30th.
A thirty-four year veteran of the Buffalo Fire Department, he served as Chief Fire Administrator; Deputy Commissioner of Administration and Personnel; Deputy Commissioner of Emergency Medical Services and for the last 7 ½ years of his career, as Commissioner of Fire/Emergency Management, retiring June 30, 2017.
In September of 2017, he was appointed Assistant Commissioner of Homeland Security for the State of New York by then Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, tasked with overseeing the 14 counties of Western New York and the Finger Lakes. Wanting to spend more time with his family, Whitfield left that position in September of 2019 and is presently retired.