Woman Reaches US army’s top rank

By | November 15, 2008

_45208706_dunwoody_ap226An American woman has been promoted to four-star general – the first female to reach the US army’s highest rank.

In her acceptance speech, Ann E Dunwoody said she had never expected to rise so high in the ranks in her 33-year career.

She said no one was more surprised than she and her husband. “Behind every successful woman there’s an astonished man,” she added. There are 21 female generals, most of them one-star, in the US army.  Women make up 14% of the army’s active-service strength of more than 500,000 soldiers. …

Defence Secretary Robert Gates said: “History will no doubt take note of [Dunwoody’s] achievement in breaking through this final ‘brass ceiling’ to pin on this fourth star.” “But she would rather be known and remembered first and foremost as a US army soldier.”

She is now head of the Army Materiel Command, in charge of weapons, equipment and uniforms for the army. Women are barred from combat roles but have been allowed in the last two decades to serve in a wide variety of other positions.

“It’s been my experience in my 33 years in the military that the doors have continued to open and the opportunities have continued to expand,” she said. – bbc

Some history (her-story?)

… in June of 1970 the Army took the first step and promoted the chief of the Army Nurse Corps Colonel Anna May Hayes to Brigadier General – the very first woman to wear a star. Literally minutes later Colonel Elizabeth P. Hoisington, Women’s Army Corps Director, received her new star.- aug

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THE FIRST TWO MILITARY WOMEN TO ACHIEVE GENERAL OFFICER RANK, Brig. Gen. Anna Mae Hays, Chief of the Army Nurse Corps (left), and Brig. Gen. Elizabeth P. Hoisington, Director, WAC (right), with Mrs. Dwight D. Eisenhower on their promotion day, 11 June 1970. – army.mil

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