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Empowered women through the generations

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Jennifer Dowling
  • 90th Civil Engineer Squadron
March is National Women's History Month. This year's theme is women's education and women's empowerment. When I think of women who have inspired me, I think of three women who without a doubt have impacted the world we all live in.

The first is a woman born in 1921. She became a payroll clerk for the Air Force during World War II in 1942. In 1962, she earned her real-estate license and within two years obtained her broker's license. She went on to open her own real-estate office and was the President of the Sacramento Woman's Council of Realtors in 1968 and Director of the California Association of Realtors.

The second is a woman born in 1932. She grew up poor in the projects of Boston. In 1951, at 19 years of age, she was one of the first women to join the United States Air Force. She worked as an administrative assistant at numerous bases. After serving in the Air Force, this self-taught medical transcriptionist opened one of the first medical transcription companies in the U.S. in 1974.

The third was born in 1956 in Long Island, NY. Her beginnings included working as a candy striper at age 14 at the local hospital. She worked her way up in the medical field, learning respiratory therapy. At the age of 48 she went back to school to complete her Bachelor's Degree in Business and then continued on to complete her Master's Degree at the age of 51, proving to her children and everyone around her that you are never too old to go back to school or to follow your dreams. She is now the Lead Respiratory Care Practitioner, Oxygen Manager, and is involved in special task forces for Kaiser Permenente in the Southern California region.

These three women are my grandmother, my mother-in-law and my mother. They have all had a significant impact on my life as well as many others. These are just a few strong educated women who I know. How many inspirational women do you have in your life? Come celebrate the women who have inspired you at the wing's Women's History Event being held on March 20 at 3 p.m in the Fall Hall Community Center. The event will also include the wing's Federal Women of the Year ceremony.