Fire Engineer is County’s First African-American Woman in that Role
Clark County will celebrate the promotion of the first African-American woman to become a County Fire Department engineer during a special ceremony beginning 8 a.m. Friday, Feb. 15, at Fire Station 18 at 575 E. Flamingo Road.
Jennifer Osborne joined the County Fire Department in December 2006, and spent most of her time with the department as a paramedic and firefighter at Station 27. On Friday, she will become the first African-American woman to be promoted to engineer within the department.
“Jennifer exemplifies the professionalism and dedication to public service that is at the core of our department,” Fire Chief Bertral Washington said. “During Black History Month, her historic achievement is an inspiration and special reminder for all people that anything is possible with faith, hard work, and perseverance.”
As a fire engineer, Osborne will respond to emergency calls as the driver of a vehicle, transporting the necessary equipment and personnel to fire scenes. She will also set up the necessary equipment and maintain the operation of that equipment. For example, the fire engineer connects the hoses to the hydrants and pumps, operates the pump ensuring that the pump is operating at the proper pressure and water flow, operates ladder or snorkel power lifts and other equipment as required, and maintains the equipment when it is not in use.
Osborne, 36, is a graduate of Colorado State University, where she received a degree in equine science. She is an avid rock climber. Osborne said that it was her friends who encouraged her to try to become a firefighter. She was a paramedic in Colorado, and then moved to Las Vegas about 10 years ago and worked for MedicWest Ambulance until she joined the County Fire Department.
“I look forward to taking on the challenges of this new position,” Osborne said. “I did not set out to be the first in any role, but I am honored to be able to serve as an example for the next generation of black women.”
Clark County is a dynamic and innovative organization dedicated to providing top-quality service with integrity, respect and accountability. With jurisdiction over the world-famous Las Vegas Strip and covering an area the size of New Jersey, Clark is the nation’s 14th-largest county and provides extensive regional services to more than 2 million citizens and 42 million visitors a year. Included are the nation’s 8th-busiest airport, air quality compliance, social services and the state’s largest public hospital, University Medical Center. The county also provides municipal services that are traditionally provided by cities to almost 900,000 residents in the unincorporated area. Those include fire protection, roads and other public works, parks and recreation, and planning and development.