OBSERVANCE OF WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH 2011

UNCLASSIFIED//

ROUTINE

R 251554Z FEB 11

FM CNO WASHINGTON DC

TO AL NAVADMIN
NAVADMIN

INFO CNO WASHINGTON DC

BT
UNCLAS
FM CNO WASHINGTON DC//N00//
TO NAVADMIN
INFO CNO WASHINGTON DC//N00//
NAVADMIN 066/11

MSGID/GENADMIN/CNO WASHINGTON DC/N00/FEB//

SUBJ/OBSERVANCE OF WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH 2011//



RMKS/1.  NATIONAL WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH WILL BE OBSERVED 1-31 MARCH 2011.  THE 
NATIONAL AND DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE THEME FOR THIS YEAR'S OBSERVANCE IS "OUR 
HISTORY IS OUR STRENGTH."

2.  WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH ORIGINATED IN 1978, WHEN THE SONOMA COUNTY
(CALIFORNIA) COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN INITIATED A WOMEN'S HISTORY 
WEEK TO COINCIDE WITH INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY.  IN 1981, IN RESPONSE TO 
GROWING SUPPORT FOR THE WEEK, CONGRESS PASSED A JOINT RESOLUTION PROCLAIMING A 
WOMEN'S HISTORY WEEK.  IN 1987, THE NATIONAL WOMEN'S HISTORY PROJECT, A 
NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION DEDICATED TO HONORING AND PRESERVING WOMEN'S HISTORY, 
PETITIONED CONGRESS TO EXPAND THE CELEBRATION TO THE ENTIRE MONTH OF MARCH.  
SINCE THEN, NATIONAL WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH HAS BEEN APPROVED BY CONGRESS EVERY 
YEAR AND COMMEMORATES THE DIVERSE CONTRIBUTIONS WOMEN HAVE MADE, AND CONTINUE 
TO MAKE, TO OUR NATION.

3.  TODAY, MORE THAN 53,000 ACTIVE-DUTY WOMEN AND MORE THAN 10,000 FEMALE 
RESERVISTS ARE SERVING IN THE NAVY.  THEY MAKE UP 16.3 PERCENT OF THE FORCE, 
AND MAKE INDISPENSABLE CONTRIBUTIONS TO OUR MISSION AND OPERATIONS.  THIRTY-
ONE ACTIVE AND RESERVE FEMALE FLAG OFFICERS AND MORE THAN 50 FEMALE COMMAND 
MASTER CHIEFS ARE LEADING FROM THE FRONT.
NEARLY 50,000 WOMEN SERVE IN A WIDE RANGE OF SPECIALTIES AS NAVY CIVILIANS.  
TODAY, 95 PERCENT OF NAVY BILLETS ARE OPEN TO WOMEN, AND WOMEN ARE ASSIGNED TO 
SHIPS, AFLOAT STAFFS, NAVAL CONSTRUCTION FORCE UNITS, AND AVIATION SQUADRONS.

4.  SINCE BECOMING AN OFFICIAL PART OF THE NAVY IN 1908 WITH THE ESTABLISHMENT 
OF THE NURSE CORPS, WOMEN HAVE EXHIBITED AN EVER- INCREASING INFLUENCE AND 
IMPACT.  WITH THE PASSAGE OF THE WOMEN'S ARMED SERVICES INTEGRATION ACT ON 12 
JUNE 1948, WOMEN GAINED PERMANENT STATUS IN THE ARMED SERVICES.  THE FIRST SIX 
ENLISTED WOMEN WERE SWORN INTO THE REGULAR NAVY ON 7 JULY 1948 AND, ON 15 
OCTOBER 1948, THE FIRST EIGHT FEMALE OFFICERS WERE COMMISSIONED.  WOMEN WERE 
FIRST ASSIGNED TO SELECTED NON-COMBATANT SHIPS IN 1978, AND OPPORTUNITIES WERE 
LATER BROADENED IN 1994 TO INCLUDE SERVICE ON COMBATANT SHIPS FOLLOWING THE 
REPEAL OF THE COMBAT EXCLUSION LAW.
MOST RECENTLY, IN APRIL 2010, THE NAVY ANNOUNCED A POLICY CHANGE THAT ALLOWS 
WOMEN TO SERVE ON SUBMARINES, OPENING THE APERTURE TO A KEY TALENT POOL.

5.  THE SPIRITED AND COURAGEOUS EFFORTS OF WOMEN IN THE UNITED STATES NAVY 
HAVE SHAPED OUR LEGACY.  A VETERAN OF TWO WORLD WARS AND DIRECTOR OF THE WOMEN 
ACCEPTED FOR VOLUNTEER EMERGENCY SERVICE (WAVES
)
FROM 1946 TO 1953, CAPT JOY BRIGHT HANCOCK PLAYED A CRITICAL ROLE IN THE 
PASSAGE OF THE WOMEN'S ARMED SERVICE INTEGRATION ACT.  DURING THE VIETNAM WAR 
IN 1972, CDR ELIZABETH BARRETT BECAME THE FIRST FEMALE LINE OFFICER TO HOLD 
COMMAND IN A COMBAT ZONE WHEN SHE BECAME COMMANDING OFFICER OF THE NAVAL 
ADVISORY GROUP IN SAIGON.  IN 1974, LT BARBARA ALLEN RAINEY EARNED HER WINGS 
AND BECAME THE FIRST FEMALE U.S. NAVAL AVIATOR.  IN 1990, LCDR DARLENE ISKRA 
BECAME THE FIRST WOMAN TO COMMAND A NAVY SHIP AND, IN 1998, CDR MAUREEN A. 
FARREN BECAME THE NAVY'S FIRST FEMALE COMBATANT SHIP COMMANDER.  IN 2002, 
MASTER CHIEF JACQUELINE DIROSA BECAME THE NAVY'S FIRST FEMALE FORCE MASTER 
CHIEF AND, IN 2006, SHE BECAME THE FIRST FEMALE FLEET MASTER CHIEF.  CAPT 
SUNITA WILLIAMS, A NAVAL AVIATOR AND NASA ASTRONAUT, SET THE RECORD IN 2007 
FOR THE LONGEST UNINTERRUPTED SPACE FLIGHT BY A FEMALE ASTRONAUT.

6.  ALL COMMANDS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO INCREASE THEIR KNOWLEDGE AND 
AWARENESS OF THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF WOMEN TO OUR NAVY AND NATION BY CELEBRATING 
WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH THROUGH PROGRAMS, EXHIBITS, PUBLICATIONS AND 
PARTICIPATION IN MILITARY AND COMMUNITY EVENTS.  A PRESENTATION IS AVAILABLE 
ON THE DEFENSE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE WEB SITE AT 
HTTP://WWW.DEOMI.ORG/SPECIALOBSERVANCE/PRESENTATIONS.CFM?CATID=3.
MATERIALS ON THE ROLE OF WOMEN IN NAVAL HISTORY CAN BE FOUND AT
HTTP://WWW.HISTORY.NAVY.MIL/SPECIAL%20HIGHLIGHTS/WOMEN/WOMEN-
INDEX.HTM AND HTTP://CMSAUTHOR.BUPERS.NAVY.MIL/ABOUTUS/BUPERS/
WOMENSPOLICY/WOMENSHISTORYMONTH.HTM.  INFORMATION ON THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF 
WOMEN TO OUR NATION'S LEGACY CAN BE FOUND AT HTTP://WOMENSHISTORYMONTH.GOV/ 
AND HTTP://NWHP.ORG/.  INDIVIDUALS AND COMMANDS ARE ALSO ENCOURAGED TO 
PARTICIPATE IN THE SEA SERVICE LEADERSHIP ASSOCIATION (SSLA) WOMEN'S 
LEADERSHIP SYMPOSIUM 15-16 MARCH 2011 IN SAN DIEGO, CA.  DURING THE 
CONFERENCE, THE RECIPIENTS OF THE 2011 JOY BRIGHT HANCOCK LEADERSHIP AWARDS 
WILL BE HONORED.
MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AT HTTP://WWW.SEALEADER.ORG.

7.  MORE INFORMATION ON DIVERSITY CONFERENCES, EVENTS, AND OBSERVANCES IS 
AVAILABLE AT THE NAVY DIVERSITY WEB SITE:
HTTP://WWW.NPC.NAVY.MIL/COMMANDSUPPORT/DIVERSITY.

8.  POINT OF CONTACT IS LT LAURA STEGHERR, OPNAV (N134), AT (703) 695
-
0820/DSN 225 OR VIA EMAIL AT LAURA.STEGHERR(AT)NAVY.MIL.

9.  RELEASED BY ADMIRAL G. ROUGHEAD, CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS.//

BT
#0001
NNNN

%d bloggers like this: