MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- In 1987, Congress first designated March as Women’s History Month to honor and celebrate the multitude of sacrifices and achievements made by women over the course of history, including those that served in the military.
“It’s important to talk about women’s history,” said Capt. Nicole Powell, a member of the Women’s History Month Committee. “To celebrate the women of the past and to inspire the women of the future.”
Misawa Air Base began Women’s History Month this year by hosting a Women in Leadership Panel. Women in various leadership roles across the base spoke to Airmen about their accomplishments, struggles they’ve faced and answered questions from the attendees.
“I think we all benefit from the panels and discussions we have, not only from Women’s History Month, but any other observance months,” said Senior Master Sgt. La’Kisha Davis, the 35th Fighter Wing Staff Agency superintendent. “It lends insight for me to know personal experiences and challenges of other airmen across the service.”
Davis added that sharing experiences allows individuals in the military to learn and grow from them, ultimately creating a better and more equal service.
“I want all service members in the future to feel empowered and confident while performing at their true potential,” said Davis. “They should be able to challenge themselves and learn from others without having to overcome unnecessary setbacks and barriers.”
Since the first official female service member during World War I, women have continued to serve and contribute to the U.S. military.
“We’ve definitely come far and progressed on major issues,” said Davis. “But we haven’t fully achieved what needs to be done.”
Davis added that educating service members on past experiences can ultimately guide the Air Force towards a better future.
“To avoid complacency as a service, I don’t think we should ever look towards a finish line in resolving new issues,” said Davis “With each generation and change that comes with it, we move forward, flexibility is necessary for the military to maintain.”