City of Pensacola Fire Chief
You were a registered nurse and had been working in fire services for 13 years when you began pursuing your Bachelor of Science in Nursing. What made you want to further your education and why did you choose UWF?
My time working as a registered nurse in the NICU inspired me to further my nursing education. Focusing my work effort on my fire career allowed me the time to enroll in UWF’s RN to BSN program. I had several friends from the NICU and other nursing fields who attended UWF and they were very pleased with the education. Even though there are several online options for this program, attending Pensacola’s local University appealed to me. I am a proud Argo!
Earlier this year, you became Pensacola’s first female fire chief. What do you hope to accomplish as a leader for the city’s fire department?
I feel truly honored to have been selected to serve as fire chief. Obviously, my primary focus is the safety of this community and our firefighters. We have the profound honor and responsibility of taking care of our residents’ fire companies and firehouses—in return, we have the privilege of taking care of them, their families and our city’s visitors.
You went back to school while working as a fire lieutenant. How did you balance school and your professional career and how did UWF help ensure that you were successful?
Ah, balance. A difficult objective indeed. I was excited about what I was learning and that is when the stars line up—when you enjoy the work you’re doing. My favorite tool at UWF is the library. I was in there every day that I wasn’t at the firehouse. I even studied for my fire captain’s exam there. The staff is so helpful and it is really a great space to focus on getting the education you need to build a high-speed life.