FDNY commish hires first female executive officer

Capt. Elizabeth Cascio, 51, has more than 30 year of EMS experience and was about to retire when she was asked to stay on.

NEW YORK — FDNY Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro selected Capt. Elizabeth Cascio to serve as executive officer to the commissioner.

The NY Daily Times reported that this is the first time in FDNY history that a female and EMS member has held this position.

“Certainly it’s not a bad example for the department that we’re moving in a different direction,” Commissioner Nigro said at a promotions ceremony Monday. “There’s a place in the department for everyone.”

Cascio, 51, has more than 30 years of EMS experience and was about to retire when Commissioner Nigro asked her to stay on, according to the report.

“I said, ‘Who would I answer to?’ and he said, ‘Me,'” she recalled in a telephone interview. “I said, ‘All right. That’s easy.'”

The two have known each other and worked together since before the FDNY and EMS combined forces in 1996, a merger the two helped craft, according to the report.

Cascio, who started out at a volunteer ambulance company in Brooklyn in 1982, said her new job will entail fielding calls from other city agencies and within the department before they get to Nigro’s desk.

“The truth is, if you ask anyone in EMS who knows me and also within the Fire Department and the fire ranks, they’ll tell you that I’m the right person for the job and I just happened to be a woman,” she said.

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