2015 FDNY Calendar Features Danae Mines, The First Woman To Ever Grace Its Pages
Everyone knows that people don't really buy firefighter calendars to know what day it is — it's a lot more about the hunky guys posing on the pages. But for next year's FDNY calendar, the New York City Fire Department is mixing things up a little by featuring a woman on the calendar for the first time. Danae Mines is not only an 11-year veteran of the department known for being male-dominated, she's now also Miss March.
When Mines first asked about being featured in the calendar, she was told that it was something just for men. But Mines was determined not to let that stop her. As one of only 41 woman firefighters in the whole FDNY, she was used to doing things that were supposedly just for the guys.
“I wanted my picture in the calendar so that young girls and young women can see me and know that they can do this job,” she said to the Daily News.
Mines first told her family she wanted to be a firefighter when she was 10, and was told that only men joined the department, but she didn't let that stop her. “I had absolutely no support from my family when I wanted to come on the job,” she said, but once she officially made the cut, it was the exact opposite. "They could not stop bragging," she remembers.
So when she was told that she couldn't be on the calendar because she "would look like a pinup girl," she didn't let that stop her either. Contrary to all expectations, Mines made the cut, and is featured alongside the shirtless hunks dressed rather modestly in a gray tank top and red suspenders with a tool belt around her waist and a proud smile on her face.
The 2015 calendar celebrates the 150th anniversary of the FDNY, so it's only fitting that the department also recognizes one of their female firefighters in such a way for the first time. Although the FDNY has had female firefighters since 1982, the numbers of women in the department remains incredibly low, even after more than 30 years. With over 10,000 firefighters total, the 41 women who are part of the ranks make up less than half a percent of all firefighters.
But hopefully featuring one of their female fighters so prominently will inspire more and more women to join up, and will make other 10-year-old girls who want to be firefighters, as Mines once did, believe that their dreams can be reality someday, too.