Firefighter Joyce Craig to be honored posthumously

Firefighter Line of Duty Death
Shown in a 2014 photograph hanging on her locker at Engine Company 64 is fallen firefighter Joyce Craig.

LT. JOYCE CRAIG, who earned the tragic distinction of becoming Philly's first female firefighter to die on duty, will be posthumously honored for bravery by the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations.

Craig is one of 10 people whom the commission will celebrate as "everyday heroes" who have advanced social equality and justice in Philadelphia.

The other award recipients are:

* Bishop Dwayne Royster and People Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild (POWER), a multiracial interfaith coalition dedicated to pushing for social change.

* The late Gloria Casarez, Mayor Nutter's inaugural director of LGBT affairs. Casarez, who died of cancer in October, advocated for fair and equal treatment in housing, access and employment for people of color, the poor and LGBT residents.

* Adrienne Simpson and Craig will be honored for "acts of bravery that benefit others, in the face of consequences."

Simpson, the lone black employee of Philadelphia Magazine, publicly challenged the magazine's leaders after they ran an article that many readers considered racially inflammatory.

* Ellen Somekawa, executive director of the FACTS Charter School and former head of Asian Americans United.

The commission also is asking the public for nominations for five other awards for work in corporate responsibility, nonprofit stewardship, arts and culture, public safety and community service. Nominations may be submitted through Friday.

Award winners or their loved ones will be feted during the 2015 PCHR Awards ceremony April 28, at the Arts Ballroom, on Locust Street near 13th.

For nomination applications or event details, see phila.gov/humanrelations/awards or call 215-686-4670.


On Twitter: @DanaDiFilippo

Blog: phillyconfidential.com