Department of Defense
By Jim Garamone
DoD News, Defense Media Activity
June 16, 2016
Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Air Force Gen. Lori J. Robinson, commander of U.S. Northern Command and North American Aerospace Defense Command, speak with Defense Secretary Ash Carter at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., May 13, 2016. Robinson provided remarks at the United State of Women Summit in Washington, D.C., June 14, 2016. DoD photo by Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Dominique A. PineiroWASHINGTON, June 16, 2016 — The American people need to know that the U.S. military is a true meritocracy that’s open to all citizens who meet service standards, Air Force Gen. Lori J. Robinson said at the White House-sponsored United State of Women Summit here June 14.
Robinson, the commander of U.S. Northern Command and North American Aerospace Defense Command, spoke at the summit before thousands of women at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. She is the first female U.S. combatant commander.
The general highlighted the critical role women play in the defense of the nation, and she used her own story to illustrate her points.
Robinson told the audience she was from an Air Force family, but had no intention of having a military a career. She was commissioned out of ROTC when she graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 1981.
At the summit, she reflected on the oath she took in 1981, especially the line “I solemnly swear to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
“Think about how powerful that is,” she said. “Think about how amazing that is. The fact that we are pledging our allegiance not to a person or an idol or a gimmick, but to an idea -- the idea of freedom and that all people are created equal.”
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