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Blawnox firefighter honored for public service

| Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 9:01 p.m.
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Nathan Steinberg is a 2014 Jefferson Award winner. From left are David Holmberg, Highmark Inc. president of diversified business, Steinberg, and Ray Carson, Highmark Health executive vice president and chief human resources officer.

Nathan Steinberg grew up hearing stories from his grandfather about being part of the Blawnox Volunteer Fire Co.

“Hearing his stories, it was something I always wanted to do,” Steinberg said.

Steinberg realized that dream when he joined the department in 2005, working his way up to the rank of lieutenant.

His work in the community as a member of the fire department earned him a Jefferson Award for Public Service.

Steinberg was honored last month during a ceremony at Highmark, where he is employed as a supervisor for senior markets claims and coordination benefits area.

It was a humbling experience, Steinberg said.

“It's humbling because you see all the work that other people do,” he said. “It's a huge honor to be included with all the other people who have won.”

Steinberg also is a member of the Allegheny County Swiftwater Flood Response Team. That team potentially can be sent on rescue attempts well-outside of the Blawnox and Fox Chapel areas.

“We could be sent really anywhere in the state and even potentially out of state as well,” Steinberg said.

Steinberg credits his wife, Erin, for her support.

Even though the two have a young daughter, Steinberg said his wife is supportive of his work in the community.

“She has been very understanding to realize that even though she might need help with the baby, other people might need me more,” Steinberg said.

Though working with the department is demanding, he enjoys being able to help people when they most need it.

Steinberg said he has had many experiences and memories that will last forever.

“When you get those calls that really do test you, it builds your character,” Steinberg said. “You get a lot out of it. You learn to deal with crisis.”

Tom McGee is an associate editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 1513, or tmcgee@tribweb.com.

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