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Durham wants more women firefighters

Posted May 3, 2010
Updated May 4, 2010

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— Durham Fire Captain Angelica Greene is hoping more women will join her profession.

“One year from now, if we could get at least five or 10 more females to join this organization, that would be a milestone,” Greene said Monday.

Greene is one of only 10 women in a 280-person fire department.

Durham firefighter gets national recognition Durham firefighter gets national recognition

In an effort to recruit more women and minorities, Durham is launching a major hiring effort this September.

“Some departments are going through a hiring freeze right now, but fortunately for us, we've been given permission to fill our vacancies. So we are going to actively pursue that,” Durham Fire Chief Bruce Pagan said.

Greene is an example of what's possible for women in the firefighting profession. After 13 years, she is a captain and is recognized nationally for a fire safety program she developed for seniors and the disabled.

“It (the program) came from the heart and you just do things, not thinking about any recognition that will take place. So I was pretty surprised,” Greene said.

Just one woman outranks Greene, who is aiming for the role of battalion chief. Greene is even featured on Firehouse Subs cups.


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  • Mugu May 12, 2010

    OGE hit the nail on its head. Best person for the job.

  • rebelchild8769 May 12, 2010

    I am FEMALE & a firefighter, and I busted my tail to get the job. I am good at what I do because I work hard at it. I constantly update my skills and knowledge base. I have to prove myself ten times over what most males in this job have to. Most, but certainly not ALL, male firefighters take one look at a woman in this profession, and immediately think "weakling." As a 13 year US Army combat medic veteran, I am good at my job and would willingly put my skills and abilities up against any male in this profession. I may not be "the best" at what I do, but I more than carry my fair share of the load, without having to have a male firefighter to pick up any "slack." The bottom line is rather simple: If you are trapped in a life threatening situation, you wont care it if is a male OR female firefighter that rescues you, as long as you are saved from harm. I am not a FEMALE Firefighter....I am simply a FIREFIGHTER that loves what I do and works as hard as anyone else in this job.

  • ykm May 5, 2010

    Just pay the woman more money.

  • findoutthefacts May 5, 2010

    Good Lord, ncmedic201...can you play the "woe is us", "we da victim" card anymore? If people have not gone out and applied for these jobs, what are we supposed to do for them? Can we help it if they are too lazy to apply? And who told you that certain jobs only hire white males? I guarantee it was a minority who told you that and that was only a crutch to come up with a reason why they didnt get hired. In actuality, that minority wasn't qualified for the job but anytime ya'll don't get your way, it's called racism right?

  • killing_me_softly May 4, 2010

    I have never not put in an application to be a firefighter because it is a profession of mostly white males. I have never put in an application to be a firefighter because I don't want to be a firefighter. I am amused at some of these posts.

  • Voice of Reason 23 May 4, 2010

    Imagine if the NBA launched a major effort to encourage whites to apply, and talked about how great it would be if they could have 50% whites in the NBA within a few years. How would you feel about that?

    All jobs need to be gender-blind and color-blind. That should not be a factor at all. They should hire based on qualifications. If women aren't gravitating toward this kind of job, maybe they just aren't interested in it.

  • didisaythat May 4, 2010

    I am not the sharpest knife if the drawer, but I know that all empoyers and agencies hire everyone. If there are a smaller number of women or minorities is because of who applies. It is 2010 and saying people are not hired because of their skin or sex is rediculous. This is just said if someone doesn't get a job because they don't meet the qualifications they use the discrimination card.

  • hollylama May 4, 2010

    Mugu since when do we have equal rights? Justice has never been and will never be blind.

  • hollylama May 4, 2010

    The issue is that the city is trying to have the demographics of the police force and fire department match those of the city. Durham's demographics are pretty equal compared to most yet the city jobs are predominantly occupied by whites.

  • SO LOW May 4, 2010

    ncmedic201... I KNOW first hand that a white male who set records in the agility as well as the written test was turned down due to the hiring of minorities in general black females.

    Your main concern is a job that is held predominantly by white males means women are less likely to apply.. I call BS on that. We aren't living in the 60's anymore... women know they are minorities and will get on with the FD if they just simply apply... you know it was well as I do.