Meet Capt. Kristen Griest: The FIRST Female Infantry Officer!

Meet Capt. Kristen Griest: The FIRST Female Infantry Officer!

April 28, 2016

Meet Capt. Kristen Griest: The FIRST Female Infantry Officer!

Since Defense Secretary Ash Carter lifted all gender restrictions in military departments, Americans have been waited with bated breath to see how our female military members would take on these new opportunities.

Capt. Kristen Griest has stepped up to the plate and has proven to be one badass women as one of the first females to earn a Ranger tab as well as becoming the Army’s first female infantry officer! The Army Times has the story:

Griest is expected to graduate from the Maneuver Captain's Career Course on Thursday wearing the distinctive blue infantry cord, officials confirmed to Army Times.

"Like any other officer wishing to branch-transfer, Capt. Griest applied for an exception to Army policy to transfer from military police to infantry," said Bob Purtiman, a spokesman for the Maneuver Center of Excellence and Fort Benning, Georgia. "Her transfer was approved by the Department of the Army [on Monday] and she's now an infantry officer."

More women are expected to follow in her footsteps; the Army earlier this month announced that it had approved requests from 22 female cadets to enter as second lieutenants in the infantry and armor branches. Thirteen of the new officers will enter into the armor branch, the other nine will go infantry. After commissioning, the new officers must successfully complete branch-specific training before they will qualify as infantry and armor officers.

On the enlisted side, at least three women have signed up to become infantry soldiers. They are not expected to start training until next year.

“An incremental and phased approach by leaders and soldiers who understand and enforce gender-neutral standards will ensure successful integration of women across the breadth and depth of our formations,” Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley previously said in a statement.

Griest and 1st Lt. Shaye Haver in August became the first women to graduate from Ranger School. A third soldier, Maj. Lisa Jaster, graduated two months later.

Griest, a 2011 West Point graduate, has since kept a low profile, shying away from media attention. That has not stopped fakers from using her name and photo on social media; a Facebook search yields at least a dozen fake profiles bearing her name. Some bear her name and Haver's photo.

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