Monday, December 12, 2011

The First Female Commander of a U.S. Navy Carrier Strike Group

Nora W. Tyson is the first woman to command a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier task group after assuming command of Carrier Strike Group Two on July 29, 2010. U.S. Navy carrier strike groups are employed in a variety of roles, all of which involve gaining and maintaining sea control - "A Global Force for Good." According to The Official Website of the United States Navy
A native of Memphis, Tenn., Rear Adm. Tyson graduated from Vanderbilt University in 1979 with a bachelor's degree in English. She attended Officer Candidate School in Newport, R.I., receiving her commission in the U.S. Navy in December of that year. Tyson reported for flight training in Pensacola, Fla., after serving a brief tour ashore in Washington. She earned her wings as a naval flight officer in 1983. She served three tours in Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron (VQ) 4 at Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, Md., and Tinker Air Force Base, in Oklahoma, including one as commanding officer. She also commanded the amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5), leading the Navy's contributions to disaster relief efforts on the U.S. Gulf Coast in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and deploying twice to the Persian Gulf in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Other tours at sea included duty as assistant operations officer aboard the training aircraft carrier, USS Lexington (AVT 16), and as navigator aboard the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65). Ashore, she served as Airborne Communications Officer Course instructor and officer in charge at Naval Air Maintenance Training Detachment 1079, NAS Patuxent River, Md. She has also completed tours on the Joint Staff as a political-military planner in the Asia-Pacific Division of the Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate; as executive assistant for the assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; as director of staff for commander, Naval Forces Europe/commander 6th Fleet, and as executive assistant for the Chief of Naval Operations. Her most recent assignment was as commander, Logistics Group, Western Pacific/commander, Task Force 73. Tyson earned a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Affairs from the U.S. Naval War College in 1995.
The flagship of Carrier Strike Group Two is the USS George HW Bush , which returned from a 7-month deployment on 10 Dec 2011 to the cheers and tears of family and friends worldwide, thanks to LiveStream, which allowed those unable to attend the homecomeing in person to watch from computers. Prior to World War I, women in the Navy were usually nurses. The Naval Reserve Act of 1916 allowed the first femail sailors who served in clerical positions in addition to nursing and pharmaceutical positions. They also served as photographers, radio operators, torpedo assemblers and a variety of other positions. All of these positions were abandoned by the women at the end of the war when they were released from active duty. WAVES, Women Appointed for Voluntary Emergency Service was the women's auxiliary generated by the need for additional personnel during World War II. The trend of having women in the Navy primarily during war times continued until the early 1970s. Women began flying for the Navy and were finally allowed to advance as commissioned officers. The Department of the Navy announced authorization of a policy change allowing women to begin serving onboard Navy submarines in mid-2010. Rear Admiral Tyson, I applaud your accomplishments.