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Woman's History Month - A Message from the Adjutant General

Adjutant General of the State of Rhode Island
MG Kevin R. McBride, Adjutant General,
Commanding General, Rhode Island National Guard

In honor of the proclamation of Women's History Month this March, it is fitting to reflect on their long history of service to our nation. Women have served in the United States Military since 1775. They initially cared for the wounded, laundered and mended clothing, and cooked for the troops in camps, all under less than desirable conditions. The essential support they provided did not formally exist within United States military until the 20th Century.

The tradition of service, women have provided since the birth of our nation continues in an ever-increasing role. They have become an invaluable and essential part of our military over the past 13 years of war, serving in critical positions throughout each of the uniformed services. Women have deployed to every overseas contingency operation as pilots, logisticians, and gunners on security force details, while operating out of forward operating bases, just to name a few. The February 2012 landmark ruling recently opened additional opportunities to our women in uniform, validating what our organization already knew. Any motivated Service Member is capable of increased responsibility and challenges if they are committed and meet the standard. This decision will ultimately strengthen our nation and insure the best and most qualified candidates fill our ranks, regardless of the career field. The decision opens more than 14,000 additional positions to women by rescinding the co-location restriction and allowing women to be assigned to select positions in ground combat units at the battalion level.

As the Adjutant General and Commanding General of the RI National Guard, I am especially proud of the service and sacrifice displayed by the women of the RI Army and Air National Guard as they have continued the tradition of answering our nation’s call.