Award Nominations

Josephine Howard Stafford Memorial Award

Josephine Howard Stafford

The Josephine Howard Stafford Memorial Award was adopted to honor a current or former City of Tampa female employee who demonstrates outstanding commitment to her position and the community.  The award is given in memory of Ms. Stafford who devoted 24 years to the City of  Tampa as an Assistant City Attorney.  She was also the first woman judge in Hillsborough County and was a pioneer for women's issues, both professionally and in the community.



The 2018 Josephine Howard Stafford Memorial Award recipient is Chief Barbara Tripp, the first African American woman to serve as Rescue Division Chief for Tampa Fire Rescue.


A native of Tampa, Florida, Chief Tripp attended public school in Hillsborough County and graduated from Hillsborough Senior High School in 1984.  She then attended the University of South Florida before enlisting in the United States Navy in 1988.  She completed a tour of duty at Naval Air Station Barbers Point, Hawaii.  She was honorably discharged after four years and began a career in public service.  She attended Hillsborough Community College where she completed an Associate of Arts, Associate of Science in EMS Management, and an Associate of Science in Nursing.  She later returned to school at St. Petersburg College where she received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.


She has been employed with the City of Tampa for more than 20 years and has progressed through the ranks as a Firefighter, Paramedic, Lieutenant, Captain, Quality Improvement Officer, Rescue Division Supervisor, and currently serves as the Rescue Division Chief.  She holds multiple certifications within Tampa Fire Rescue including, Critical Care Tech, Urban Search and Rescue, Honor Guard, Paramedic of Record, Paramedic Field Training Officer, Hazardous Materials Technician, Camp Hopetake Counselor, and Critical Incident Stress Management team.


Chief Tripp is a member of the Florida Fire Chiefs’ Association, and the Tampa Bay Area Critical Incident Stress Management Team. She has received Nurse of the Year from Tampa General Hospital Ambulatory Service, as well as Counselor of the Year for Camp Hopetake, a camp for children who have survived burn injuries.

To learn more about Josephine Howard Stafford, see video clip below.
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Past JHS Award Winners