According to the latest Status Report of the nonprofit research group Women in Fire Service, Inc., United States female firefighters and officers number 5,848. Although that number represents just 2% of the almost 300,000 career fire fighters throughout the country, more women are choosing the challenge of a career in firefighting.
Despite the fact that most departments didn't begin hiring women until the mid-1980's, women are rising through the ranks. San Francisco boasts the largest department-1,800 paid firefighters in 41 fire stations-- headed by a female chief. For Chief Joanne Hayes-White, a 14 year veteran, leading the SFFD is more than a job, "I try to be a role model... I think it's wonderful when a little girl can see a woman firefighter. It sends a great message that if you work hard, you can achieve your dreams."
David R. Furtado, Executive Producer of Tule Fog Productions LLC, agrees that the female firefighters are an inspiration. "Woman have to be tough and work twice as hard," says Furtado. "They are always under the microscope. They can't make any mistakes in front of the men. I believe it's one of the toughest jobs a woman can pursue and I wanted to bring their story to the public." So he devotes half of his riveting web documentary The Battalion-The Series, a full access peek at the lives of San Francisco firefighters, to women's stories. On alternating weeks the program airs: "Twenty-Four Hours with the San Francisco Fire Department" introducing viewers to the life of a firefighter and "Women on the Watch" that reveals women's unique contributions and outlook on firefighting. "Women on the Watch" allows viewers to meet women ranging from the uncertain Probie all the way up to Chief Hayes-White.
You can view "Women on the Watch" episodes and learn more about other productions by Tule Fog Productions LLC at www.thebattalion.tv.
To schedule an interview with David Furtado, please call 818-902-1599 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.