SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A United States Army general stopped in Northern California in a bid to get more women to join the military.
Brigadier Gen. Donna Martin says her mission is to find women looking to start a new career in the Army.
Army recruiters snapped to attention at the Fair Oaks center in Citrus Heights on Monday. The recruiters and future recruits met one of only 26 female generals in the army. Martin says her orders from Washington, D.C., are clear: Get more women to join the ranks.
“We put together a team of female recruiters and they’re called a female engagement team,” she said.
They are traveling the world hoping more women, even local high schoolers, will raise their right hand.
“It’s very important that our Army reflect the society for which we protect,” she said.
Right now, only 16 percent of the army is female, while women make up 51 percent of the eligible youth population.
“Just because you’re a woman doesn’t mean that you can’t do the same thing a man can do,” said recruit Haley Zahordney
Martin says more than 130 women are already enlisted for infantry and armor positions because of recent Congressional legislation. They will begin training in February.
Female role models are important to her.
“They can see their story in us. And when they see [what] we’ve achieved then they understand they can do it too,” she said.
Martin helps oversee about 9,000 Army recruiters around the world.