GREENWICH — Chris Pratico “has big shoes to fill.”

Those were the words of Fire Chief Peter Siecienski Tuesday during a ceremony in the Public Safety Complex in which Pratico was sworn in as the new fire marshal for the town of Greenwich.

The chief was referring to the fact that Pratico’s father, Tony, used to be fire inspector for the town.

“It will be an honor to serve in the position,” Chris Pratico said shortly after his son Michael pinned his new badge to his uniform. “I’m going to do the best job I can.”

Pratico has worked for five years as a deputy fire marshal. Before that he served for 22 years as a firefighter. A town resident, Pratico also worked in the construction field before joining the fire service.

Pratico takes over the position from Shawn McDonnell, who recently retired.

“To me this is the most important position in the Fire Department — and one of the most confusing as well,” the fire chief said, as the public is often poorly informed about the many facets of fire safety.

The fire marshal’s office is responsible for enforcing fire codes and other measures to ensure safety at businesses, commercial buildings and residences. The office also investigates the cause of fires.

“The fire marshal is in charge of fire safety for the entire community, through fire codes and standards. It’s a tall order,” Siecienski said. “Chris is up to the task. He’s going to be a great fire marshal and ambassador for the town of Greenwich.”

The fire marshal’s office was under scrutiny by town management in 2011, when it was publicly revealed that schools in the community had not been inspected for fire issues.

Pratico said the schools had all be inspected in recent years, and a backlog in other inspections had been cleared.

The new fire marshal said he is looking to prioritize fire safety at multi-family homes in Greenwich — structures that can be difficult to inspect due to convoluted ownership arrangements. He said he would welcome the cooperation of the landlord community to make regular inspections a routine event at multifamily dwellings.

The fire marshal’s office has been steadily building up its electronic database to ensure compliance and regular inspections.

Pratico was named the new fire marshal by the Board of Selectmen in late November, and he has been serving in that capacity since then.