Betty Swint

Betty Swint was the first African-American female hired in the Austin Fire Department and the only African-American female to achieve the rank of Firefighter. She was hired on November 5, 1979 and retired at the rank of Fire Specialist in April of 2006.

On November 18, 1979, Betty Swint became the first African-American female firefighter in the Austin Fire Department. She was the only woman in Cadet Class #78, comprised of her…and 39 men.

Rising to the rank of Fire Specialist, Betty spent 27 years serving the community, mostly on the B shift at Station 26 in east Austin.

Betty’s long history of service and dedication have inspired others—especially women—to join our ranks through the years. In fact, we are proud that more than 7 percent of our firefighting force is comprised of women, more than twice the national average!

We salute you, Betty, and are delighted to call you one of our own!

(Photo credit: © Austin Fire Department/Johnny Arispe)

How Betty got in the fire service video

Retirement News Article

City of Austin proclamation to make February 23rd Betty Swint Day.