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DID YOU KNOW the first woman

POW was Civil War Army contract sur- geon Dr. Mary E. Walker, who was cap- tured on April 10, 1864, when she took a wrong turn while trying to get to a sick patient. The Confederates imprisoned her in the military prison in Richmond, VA, known as “Castle Thunder”. She was re- leased on Aug. 12, 1864, in exchange for a Confederate major. The next time mili- tary women were captured by the enemy was during World War II, when 67 Army nurses and 11 Navy nurses captured in the Philippines were held by the Japanese for nearly three years, and five Navy nurses captured on the island of Guam were held as POWs for four months. One Army flight nurse was aboard an aircraft that was shot down behind enemy lines in Germany in 1944. She was held as a POW for four months. More recently, a female Army doctor and an enlisted woman were held as POWs in 1991 during Operation Desert Storm, and three enlisted women were captured during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003, one of whom died in captivity of injuries sustained in a vehicle accident prior to capture. (Source: Wom- en in Military Service for America Memo- rial archives)


son) Roundtree, WAAC/WAC, a native of Charlotte, NC, was a graduate of Spelman College in Atlanta and a protégée of the influential African American educator, Mary Macleod Bethune, when she was se- lected as a member of the first class of of- ficer candidates of the WAAC in 1942. After the war, CPT Roundtree used the G.I. Bill to attend Howard University Law School. When she graduated with her law degree in 1950, there were only 83 black women lawyers in the United States com- pared to 6,165 white women. She estab- lished a law firm in northwest Washing- ton, DC, to serve the black community there. During the course of her legal ca- reer, Roundtree handled several high-pro- file cases. Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach Company, a landmark civil rights case in- volving bus travel across state lines, was decided by the Interstate Commerce Com- mission in November 1955, the same year as the more famous Rosa Parks incident, which involved a city bus. In its decision


on Keyes, the ICC found the practice of designating separate seats for white and black interstate bus passengers to be “un- just discrimination and undue and unrea- sonable prejudice and disadvantage … and is therefore unlawful.” (Source: Women In Military Service For America Memorial archives)

DID YOU KNOW as a result of the

progress of the 1990s, women are now ex- cluded from only 9 percent of Army roles—although that figure represents nearly 30 percent of active-duty positions. Army women cannot be assigned to the following occupational fields: infantry, armor, special forces, cannon field artil- lery and multiple launch rocket artillery. Also closed to women are: Ranger units at the regiment level and below, ground sur- veillance radar platoons, combat engineer line companies, and short range defense artillery units. In the Air Force, 99 percent of all occupations are open to women. Navy women are only excluded from sub- marine crews and SEAL teams, special boat unit crews and support positions with the Marine Corps ground combat units. The Marine Corps has opened 92 percent of its occupational fields to women, how- ever 38 percent of positions are closed to women. Closed occupational fields in- clude infantry, tank and assault amphibian vehicles and artillery. All Coast Guard oc- cupations and positions are open to wom- en. (Source: Women In Military Service For America archives)

DID YOU KNOW the Defense De-

partment Advisory Committee on Women in the Services (DACOWITS) was estab- lished in 1951 by then Secretary of De- fense, George C. Marshall. The Commit- tee is composed of civilian women and men who are appointed by the Secretary of Defense to provide advice and recom- mendations on matters and policies relat- ing to the recruitment and retention, treat- ment, employment, integration, and well-being of highly qualified profession- al women in the Armed Forces. Histori- cally, DACOWITS’ recommendations have been very instrumental in effecting changes to laws and policies pertaining to military women.


Diversity Employer

Blue Cross Blue Shield of America

BCBSA has an established Diversity Council that drives the diversity mission throughout our organization.

The mission of the Diversity Council is: • To invigorate all

employees with a keener appreciation of and sensitivity to our shared and unique qualities. • To foster a corporate culture that fully taps the potential of all employees. • To increase the Association’s corporate knowledge of diversity and the critical role it plays in maximizing our collective and individual achievements. • To facilitate integration of diversity and inclusion goals and initiatives into corporate programs, policies and systems

Kevin Shanklin

Executive Director Office of the President & CEO

Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association


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