First female fire chief announced at Anchorage Fire Department

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Following the retirement of longtime chief Denis LeBlanc, who stepped down in May, the Anchorage Fire Department has named its newest chief, who not surprisingly had been acting chief during the hiring process after LeBlanc's departure.

In a statement issued Wednesday, AFD said Jodie Hettrick, the first woman chief, will be taking her spot at the head of the department after serving as acting chief.

In a statement issued by Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, he called Hettrick "instrumental" in the current AFD leadership.

“Jodie Hettrick has earned the respect of the AFD staff during her time as Deputy Fire Chief,” Berkowitz said in a statement. “She has been instrumental in moving the department forward, and will continue to make sure that AFD remains one of the finest departments in the country.”

Hettrick joined AFD in 2012 and served as assistant chief and deputy chief before her eventual promotion. She will begin in her new role "immediately," making history for the department as the first female chief.

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