Wichita Has First Female Battalion Chief

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WICHITA, Kan. (AP) _ The Wichita Fire Department has named its first female battalion chief.

She's Elizabeth ``Tammy'' Snow.

But the 50-year-old Snow deflects any suggestion that she's a pioneer.

She says she's not sure that she feels like a trailblazer, noting there were women in the department before her.

But none of her predecessors stayed on the job more than four years.

This year marks Snow's 20th anniversary on the job.

Snow hopes more women and young girls see what she has done and realize it's an option for them as well.

Officials say they want to expand the ranks of female firefighters. Currently, less than 10 of the department's more than 400 firefighters are women.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)