Sean Newman has been married to Fox News senior meteorologist Janice Dean since 2007. He is a Battalion Chief with the New York City Fire Department. They have two sons together.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. Sean Newman Has Been a New York City Firefighter For More Than 20 Years
Sean Newman has been with the New York City Fire Department since 1996. His wife, Janice Dean, shared multiple photos from his promotion ceremony on January 3, 2019, when he was made a Battalion Chief.
His last promotion was in 2010, when he was promoted to Captain. Dean joked on Instagram at the time that Newman “does not enjoy these congratulatory posts, but this is a big one, so he’s going to have to deal.”
2. Sean Newman Lost Several Colleagues From His Firehouse on September 11
Sean Newman had been with the New York City Fire Department for about five years when the attacks of September 11, 2001, struck.
In May of 2017, Newman gave the eulogy for his friend Raymond Pfeifer, who had battled cancer that was believed to have been caused by his exposure to toxic fumes at Ground Zero. In the eulogy, published by Fire Engineering, Newman talked about the tragedy inflicted on their firehouse: Engine 40/Ladder 35.
Newman explained, “Ray, as the de facto sergeant major of The Cavemen, along with our officers, lead us as we dug until dawn the next day, and then in loosely-formed groups on successive days that turned into weeks, and finally months.” He explained that the firehouse lost 12 firefighters that day.
“Our losses were absolute. Even our Chief of Department was killed, and everyone from all levels of the Department, from headquarters to the firehouse, were overwhelmed. We were not getting the usual support anytime soon; the scope of the tragedy was too great and everyone was spread too thin. Someone had to take charge. Ray instantly filled the leadership void at the firehouse, supporting the families of our lost members, attending the services and memorials for men lost at our firehouse, and rallying us to go to memorials and funerals of any lost FDNY member (On one day in October, there were over 20 services Department-wide). And Ray wasn’t any one family’s firehouse liaison (a time honored role when an active member dies), he was every family’s liaison, always advising the member assigned to the respective family. This was a done around, and during, his regular firehouse tours.
At the same time we were trying to rebuild our rosters, and our fire engine and truck, we were also trying to renew our souls (though we did not admit it then). The most important task in the fall of 2001 was digging on the “pile,” which slowly became the “pit” (Ray, like most firemen, detested the media term “Ground Zero”) as autumn turned to winter during our ceaseless search for the remains for not just our lost brethren, but for all the victims, who deserved to depart the World Trade Center under an honor-guard escort, and not in the back of a dump truck amongst building wreckage. Ray’s was one of many strong voices demanding their dignified departure.”
3. Sean Newman Wrote His Thesis About How Firefighters Can Play a Role in Homeland Security
Sean Newman has a master’s degree from the Naval Postgraduate School. His Master’s Thesis, first published in 2011, is part of the Homeland Security Digital Library. The paper was titled, “Braving the Swarm: Lowering Anticipated Group Bias in Integrated Fire/Police Units Facing Paramilitary Terrorism.” You can download the 117-page thesis here.
In the report, Newman discussed how firefighters could help in the fight against terrorism. He pointed out in the introduction that terrorists often set explosives that cause fires at the scenes of attacks and that fire crews need to be prepared in that scenario. Newman wrote, “In assault-style terrorism, a swift-moving, networked enemy combines small-arms with explosives or accelerants, causing extensive fires and smoke conditions, further endangering victims or hostages. To continue its position as a lead innovator in the national fire service, the FDNY must create new strategies and collaborations to frame its participation in swarm-like terrorist attacks, requiring a plurality of expertise from across the emergency-responder spectrum. In light of this emerging threat, the all-hazards approach is no longer adequate.”
He cited a 2008 terror attack in Mumbai as an example. In that attack, victims were trapped in hotels that had been set on fire. “With no equipment or training to operate in a combat situation, Mumbai firefighters fought an interior attack on the intentionally-set hotel fires with a commando escort—within earshot of gunfire. “It was not easy to work in such conditions,” an anonymous firefighter said, “there is a risk while fighting fires but in this case there was the added risk of bullets” (The Hindu, 2008). As military commandos and police were moving hostages through back exits, the Mumbai Fire Brigade was tasked with saving guests whose rooms were ablaze (IBN Live, 2008), despite the possibility that the firefighters would be discovered by the terrorists.”
4. Sean Newman Proposed to Janice Dean in Front of the Restaurant Where They Had Their First Date in Midtown Manhattan; It Was Also His Idea to Renew Their Vows in a Church Ceremony
Sean Newman and Janice Dean began dating in 2002 after they were introduced by mutual friends. Their first date was at a restaurant called Prime Burger in midtown Manhattan. Dean wrote in a blog post for Fox News’ website that one day in February of 2007, Newman asked her to take a break and go for a walk.
Newman wore the same green sweater he had worn on their first date. They walked to the same Prime Burger location, but it was closed. Dean said she failed to pick up on the clues Newman was dropping. She didn’t realize he was proposing until Newman pulled out a small box from his breast pocket and revealed the ring.
Deane further explained in the post that she and Newman ultimately decided to elope in order to avoid the stress of trying to plan a wedding. They were both working full-time, he was applying for graduate school and she was working toward her meteorology license at the time. They ended up going to City Hall and were married before two witnesses.
It was Newman’s idea to have a church ceremony on their 10th wedding anniversary. The ceremony took place on June 9, 2017.
5. The Couple is Raising Two Sons on Long Island; Newman is the Cook in the Family
Sean Newman and Janice Dean are the proud parents of two boys, Matthew and Theodore. Dean wrote on Instagram in 2018, “It’s hard to explain the love I have for my husband when I see him with our two boys. It takes my breath away. #HappyFathersDay Sean. Matthew and Theodore are kind, thoughtful and sweet because of you. ❤️”
The family lives in Floral Park, which is a neighborhood on Long Island, according to an online search of records. They are raising their sons Catholic. Dean posted the above photo on January 26, 2019, of Newman and their sons kneeling before the altar. She wrote, “Theodore’s reconciliation day. ?? All went well during his first confession.”
At home, Newman is the one who does the cooking. Dean joked during a 2015 segment, “He’s the one that cooks. I’m good at ordering pizza.”