The question of allowing women to compete to serve alongside men in all military occupational specialties, in all branches, including our special operating forces, is the focus of Congressional hearings today.
Policy change is the first step towards full gender integration, but implementing this policy will require an ongoing focus on organizational culture aimed at shaping daily practices.
The stories of female vets don't always get traction. For example, awareness of concerns like Military Sexual Trauma have recently received recognition. Yet, the experiences that women go through in the military frequently remain under the radar.
Women in the military who start families enjoy many benefits and protection, both in the military and when they return to civilian life. As more women enlist, the military will hopefully continue to adapt.
For those serving in the military who are mothers, the phrase "it takes a village" gains a whole new meaning. The need for a trustworthy, loving network of friends or family that can step in while you're deployed or off training is imperative.
With Secretary Panetta's decision, the law has now caught up to reality. The exclusion policy didn't keep women out of combat. The conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan demonstrated this self-evident truth: bullets, bombs, RPGs and IEDs know no gender.
I know I will never be these versions of me again -- the soldier, the athlete, the new mom. But there is still some room in the back of the closet saved for my magic pants eventual retirement.
I am so proud of CPT Kristen Griest and 1LT Shaye Haver, and am excited to watch their career progress. Though, to be honest, I am also a bit jealous. They were afforded an opportunity, gave it their all, and succeeded. It is not a complicated concept. Opportunity + preparation = success.
What an incredible achievement! Against the backdrop of some of the anti-woman rhetoric of the campaign trail, two women are making history. This is a moment to be celebrated and cheered (albeit not completely).
My generation got the call and I stood up to answer. As the twin towers burned and collapsed to the ground, the rules of my safe naïve life changed. And when the ash settled over more than three-thousand lost lives, I had to move. To do... something.
Women need to encourage, mentor and challenge other women. Despite what hardships they may have experienced in their own careers, women should pull other women up with them, rather than paying the hardship forward.
As the proportion of women in the veteran population continues to grow, all efforts to expand economic opportunities for veterans must include consideration of the additional strengths and challenges of working women.
Starring Michelle Monaghan and Ron Livingston, the film explores the life of Maggie Swann (Monaghan), a U.S. Army medic and single mother as she attempts to rebuild a lost relationship with her 5-year-old son while struggling with PTSD and nightmares of sexual assault during her deployment in Afghanistan.
The symbolism of a woman fighter pilot raining death on the Islamic terrorists is powerful and far-reaching.
Over 2.5 million women have slicked back their hair and donned a uniform for this country. They have honorably served, often making numerous personal sacrifices for the red, white, and blue. This film is a snapshot into what hopefully is a larger conversation about the many sheros amongst us today.
Because Latina women in military uniforms are rarely seen in news stories, because the average American doesn't think of a Latina servicewoman when he/she hears the word "military veteran," I wrote this piece to shine the light on several who have served with distinction and those who have died while serving.