In a male dominated career, Danae Mines is not only saving lives, she’s inspiring them as she will be the very first female to appear in the New York City Fire Department’s 11th annual Calendar of Heroes.
With 14 years as a veteran member of the FDNY and Engine Co. 60 of the South Bronx, Mines is among the ranks of the estimated 10,300 firefighters of the FDNY with only 46 of those being women — half of one percent.
“I wasn’t going to let anyone tell me I couldn’t do what I wanted to do,” she told the New York Daily News. “I wanted my picture in the calendar so that young girls and young women can see me and know they can do this job.”
Mines has already received overwhelmingly positive reactions from the FDNY Facebook page to the International Association of Women in Fire and Emergency Services. One of her supporters, Baltimore County, MD fire lieutenant and trustee at the IAWFES, Angela Hughes, describes how difficult it can be for a woman in a fire department.
“It’s not easy to fit in,” she told CNN. “The stereotype is that you’re a fireman. But we’re firefighters and we’re trained to do the job. Not everyone needs to be a muscle-bound giant to do the job. It is about technique.”
Both ladies joined their respective departments as firefighters after serving as an emergency medical technician. Hines will be featured in the calendar’s month of March. Proceeds from the 2015 Calendar of Heroes will benefit the FDNY Foundation.