The Anchorage Fire Department is hiring and Chief Jodie Hettrick is hoping to see a diverse field of applicants that includes women.
“What we should have is 50% of our department should be women and 50% should be men,” said Hettrick.
But according to a report Hettrick provided to the Anchorage Assembly Public Safety Committee earlier in the month, women make up only 3.6% of AFD’s line operations staff.
“We have 11 women for, out of 329 line operations positions,” she said. “That’s not very many.” Firefighters Meghan McClain and Catlin Clark are two of those 11 women. Both said they didn’t know firefighting was an option growing up.
“It’s hard to be something you don’t know you can even try,” said McClain, who has been a firefighter and an emergency medical technician with AFD for five years.