Changing the Rules of Engagement
Changing the Rules of Engagement: Inspiring Stories of Courage and Leadership from Women in the Military
Author: Martha LaGuardia-Kotite
Publisher: Potomac Books Inc. (2012)
Binding: Hardcover, 204 pages
Changing the Rules of Engagement documents the lives of American women who have shattered the glass ceiling and performed extraordinary feats while serving their country in the military. By telling their stories about their remarkable careers in traditionally male-dominated environments, Martha LaGuardia-Kotite demonstrates how tenacious and courageous women can achieve the unimaginable. Among the pioneering women profiled are Vivien Crea, who as vice commandant of the Coast Guard held the highest position of any woman in the history of the U.S. military; Tammy Duckworth, a Purple Heart recipient and triple amputee who was shot down in Iraq while piloting a helicopter; and Heather Wilson, an Air Force Academy graduate, Rhodes scholar, and the country’s only female veteran in Congress. Included are the inspirational stories of women Marines, one of the three female Space Shuttle commanders, and the first female members of the military service academies gender-integrated classes, who recall the highs and lows of their trailblazing experiences. These are only a few of the remarkable women who tell their own inspiring stories. Representative of a widely diverse group of enlisted women and officers from different races and cultures, they have succeeded since the mid-1970s at combating prejudices and aiding change in the military with intelligence, passion, and honor.
After serving more than 20 years in the Coast Guard, Martha LaGuardia-Kotite was struck by the fact that there were amazing women in the ranks of all the services who should be more than a footnote in history. They deserved their own book.
Changing the Rules of Engagement: Inspiring Stories off Courage and Leadership from Women in the Military is about 17 extraordinary modern women who have shattered the glass ceiling and risen through the ranks in the military, becoming admirals, generals, a vice-commandant, and even an astronaut.
From the females who entered the first coed classes in the military service academies in 1976 to the first female Thunderbird, the book chronicles the lives of those women who have excelled in the traditionally male-dominated environment of the military. With tenacity, courage, intelligence, and grace these women demonstrated that they could be determined and able leaders in the military. Pushing through the obstacles and fighting for their dreams, they helped to open the doors to those who would follow in their footsteps.
The challenges they faced helped each woman develop strategies for success and philosophies for life. Whether it’s “Don’t be afraid to try something different,” or “Don’t accept ‘no’ for an answer,” these timeless lessons are food for thought for each of us, regardless of gender, race, or age.
Reviewed by: Betsy Beard (2012)