Iowa Fire Department Hires First Full-Time Female Member
It's about time!
KCCI reports that the central Iowa town of Indianola has its first-ever, full-time, female firefighter. 23-year-old Jill Burrell was recently promoted from part-time firefighter to full-time firefighter/paramedic, making a dream come true that she's had since 6 years old.
No one should be surprised in 2021 that a female has been promoted to a position typically dominated by men, and Burrell passed all tests for the promotion with flying colors, according to chief Greg Chia. "She earned this position. I think she will be one of the 30-year career people here. She really has those qualities."
If you're still asking what took so long, it's likely that it's simply because Indianola has only had a full-time fire department since 1998, although it existed as a part-time entity for over a century before that, starting in 1885.
Burrell is proud to not only serve the department and community but for the opportunity and honor to do it full-time. She says her co-workers and the public are happy to watch her ascent to full-time service in their community as well. She acknowledges the most challenging part of her job is her size. At only 5'1" she says "I am a smaller person so I am not built as well as the men, but still mighty so I can still get the job done."
Mighty indeed, firefighter Jill. Congratulations and may you enjoy a long tenure of service to the Indianola community, paving the way for the other girls and women of Iowa who dream of following in your footsteps.