By Marianna Poletti Reyes
Women play an important role in the military; they are inspirational leaders, officers, soldiers and much more. Many of these women are also mothers, sisters, wives and a crucial support to the military branches in the United States. Seventeen percent of the total force is comprised of women. In addition to this, almost all of them are a part of a minority group.
This year, 2021, marks the one hundredth anniversary of the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment. Moreover, the Nineteenth Amendment gave women the right to vote; it was the beginning of the fight for equal rights in the United States.
After World War II, they recognized women as a part of the military. As a result, in the previous years, many dressed up as men and worked for less pay. Fighting to break down the gender stereotype barrier that had been placed in front of them.
Rosie the Riveter was an icon in the “We Can Do It” poster. The poster encouraged women to join the military during world war II. Around 350,000 women served in the military during that time. They were a part of the Women’s Army Corps, the Navy Women’s Reserve, the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve, the Coast Guard Women’s Reserve, the Women Airforce Service Pilots, the Army Nurses Corps and the Navy Nurse Corps. March 21 is the set remembrance day of Rosie the Riveter.
Photo: Weston Eichner on Unsplash
Without a doubt, military women inspire the younger generation from all over the world. Additionally, many retire from the military and become entrepreneurs and public service leaders. They move on to carry successful careers that provide funding, support and activities for the community.
Honoring Inspirational Military Women
Major Sheena Rubin
Rubin, pictured above, comes from a line of military heritage, “I come from a family deeply rooted in service originating with my great-grandfather being declared MIA during the Korean War. I am proud to be the only female in my family to serve as well as the only Officer!” Maj. Rubin says.
She joined the Army Reserves after high school and commissioned after completing her graduate degree. At this time, she is stationed at Fort Leavenworth, KS attending Command and Staff General College.
“As a woman in the military, I am most proud of the impression I make daily on others. Hearing former Soldiers or peers tell me that I impacted them means I am directly empowering our next generation (like my daughter) rise to greatness!”
Lieutenant Colonel Beatriz Florez
Lt. Col Beatriz Florez has provided 16 years of service and 4 years commissioned in the Army Reserve Logistics Branch. She is currently deployed to Erbil, Iraq as the Executive Officer for the Syrian Logistics Cell.
“It is a great time to be a female in the military. Women that have served before us have paved the way for us to be where we are today. It is now our job to ensure that we continue to improve the Army as an organization and create more opportunities for women to lead and succeed.”
Florez is also involved in beauty pageants. She is an inspiring representation for the Latino community and is currently Miss Belleza Latina International. Whether it be strutting the stage in heels or lacing up boots, Florez has put in the work to reach goals and break gender stereotypes.
Other Military Women Success Stories
Women account for approximately one-fifth of the officers in every military service. This does not include the Marine Corps, where they make up about eight percent of the total officers.
Linda Bray was the first woman in the U.S. military to ever lead troops into combat. Kristen Griest and Shaye Haver were the first two women to graduate from the U.S. Army Ranger School. Anne E. Dunwoody was the first woman in the U.S. Military and uniformed service history to achieve a four-star officer rank.
Women are achieving their goals, and those are just a few of the powerful women that changed the course of military history throughout the years for women in the United States.
As part of Women’s History Month, we recognize all the powerful, influential, courageous and inspirational military women who have fought for the United States and have broken the barriers that were built to stereotype genders despite the challenges that were placed before them.
Here are 5 bonus resources on women in military service:
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