Taylor Ottino, Firefighter
Rock Hill Fire Department
Years in service: 9
Occupation: Instacart shopper
As a little girl, Taylor Ottino watched her dad, Robert Ottino, drop whatever he was doing to go help others and she knew that one day, she’d grow up and become a firefighter just like him.
It wasn’t easy - and make no mistake, it’s not easy for anyone to become a firefighter - but Ottino will tell you that as a woman in the fire service, the pressure is different than it is for men.
“The most challenging part about becoming a firefighter was being a woman in what used to be a man's world,” she says. “You feel like you really need to prove yourself and show them that yes, you can do it, and that you want to do it.”
Prove herself she did. Ottino is an interior firefighter, a swiftwater rescue technician, and one of the few drone pilots in Sullivan County, providing crucial data during fires, missing persons, and more.
“There's a job for everyone (in the fire service),” Ottino says. “Every single day as a firefighter is a good day.”