Rebecca Ramirez

Rebecca Ramirez

Rebecca Ramirez, one of the two Sacramento-region female fire chiefs and the first of her department, Woodland.

After repeatedly suggesting her husband register to train as a firefighter, he began to encourage her to consider the option herself. “He finally looked at me one day and said, ‘Why don’t you be a fireman?' I thought, ‘Well, why don’t I be a fireman? Do women do that?’ At that point, they are just looking for somebody who had a good attitude and who wants to work hard. Getting females into the fire service was really new back then.”

Rebecca argues that increasing the number of female firefighters requires a mindset shift and having more women apply. “That’s where the issue lies, I believe. Inspiring young women, in an early age, as early as elementary school and junior high, to see that this is an opportunity for them.”

 
Sacramento Bee, Photograph by Manny Crisostomo

Barbara Walters

Barbara Walters

Ann Bancroft

Ann Bancroft