Anchorage has a new fire chief, and for the first time in the history of Alaska’s largest city, it’s a woman.
Jodie Hettrick has been appointed to lead the Anchorage Fire Department, according to an announcement Wednesday from the mayor’s office.
Hettrick joined the department in 2012. She has served as acting chief since the previous chief, Denis LeBlanc, retired in May.
Now that her position is official, Hettrick says there are some internal initiatives that can go forward. That includes expanding the management of their emergency medical services.
“Not that we were struggling there, it’s just that as we do more and more emergency medical service response, we should have more assets in place to manage that operation,” Hettrick said. “And it’s just a leap that we haven’t taken, and we’ve needed to take that for a very long time.”