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DEMS staff member appointed as president for SA Emergency Services Institute

Congratulations to both Karen and Theresa on their achievements.

The South African Emergency Services Institute appointed its first female president – Theresa Geldenhuys – from the city’s DEMS Training Academy.

Executive Mayor Sivuyile Ngodwana congratulated her.

In the meantime, Karen Muller from the CoE’s library services was handpicked by the Library and Information Association of SA as one of the two most committed and excelling talents in the sector.

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“Congratulations to both Karen and Theresa on their achievements.

Theresa Geldenhuys at the Germiston Fire Station where her firefighting career started.

“What was more exciting about these accomplishments is that it recognises women’s excellence. This is a demonstration that the agenda of gender equality is progressing,” said Ngodwana.

Geldenhuys started her career more than 30 years ago when she shifted careers from being a nurse to being a firefighter.

The newly elected president started volunteering as a firefighter in 1990. She started at the Germiston Fire Station and moved to the Leon Ferreira Fire Station in 2003.

“I never imagined that I would become a firefighter because my main goal was to serve as a nurse. My life was altered when I witnessed what firefighters did daily, which included transporting people to the hospital.

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“My career started when I volunteered to be a firefighter. I was a reserve at first and the rest is history. I was instructed to watch from the fire truck during my first scene.

“I responded to an industrial fire in Wadeville for my first action scenario. You can’t be afraid of anything because of the adrenaline; all you can concentrate on is the work at hand.”

Geldenhuys enjoys training in intermittent life support to meet her medical needs.

She has worked as a fire instructor and hazmat technician and also performed car and rope rescues in the wilderness. She is an advanced life support paramedic.

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