KRTV had a great story about the first female officer being sworn in by Great Falls Fire Rescue. We got a chance to catch up with Lt. Maren Olsen Reilly on the radio Wednesday to talk about the promotion and life as a firefighter.

When it comes to being the first ever woman to be sworn in as an officer in the fire department, she says it is awesome. But she also doesn't think that she is worthy of more recognition than men serving in the same roles:

Lt. Reilly: I'm super grateful and humbled by the opportunity, but I also don't want to overplay it. We have a bunch of amazing guys on our department who have done the same thing and been in the same place, and I've had exactly the same opportunities that they have. They deserve just as much credit for being in the positions they are as I do. So I, you know, I don't, I don't want to take credit where it's not necessarily due. I mean, it's awesome.  And I'm super glad to be here. But we have a lot of amazing people on our department who also deserve a lot of credit and a lot of credit for helping me get to this point.

Reilly tells us that Great Falls Fire Rescue is undergoing a lot of changes:

Lt. Reilly: We have a new fire chief who's doing a lot of good things. And we're just trying to make things better for for the city


According to KRTV, Reilly first joined Great Falls Fire Rescue in 2011. On top of testing requirements, other hurdles need to be crossed in order to become an officer, including a minimum of seven years combined experience. KRTV also notes, "In 1982, the City of Great Falls hired the first paid female firefighter in the state, breaking barriers and opening doors for women in the modern day fire service industry."

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