The U.S. Senate confirmed Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Lorna Mahlock to the rank of two-star general in December after President Joe Biden nominated her earlier that month. A two-star general typically commands a division-sized unit of 10,000 to 15,000 Marines.
Mahlock, 54, becomes the highest-ranking Black, female officer in the Marine Corps' history.
A native of Kingston, Jamaica, Mahlock enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1985. In 2018, she became the first Black, female brigadier general. She currently serves as the deputy director of cybersecurity for combat support with the National Security Agency (NSA).
Rob Joyce, the NSA's director of cybersecurity, said in a tweet after Mahlock's confirmation that she is "an awesome leader" and a "great partner."
According to the Department of Defense, just 9 percent of Marines are women and just three women in the branch's history have picked up the rank of lieutenant general. But the Marine Corps' highest-ranking officer, Gen. David Berger, unveiled in 2021 plans to increase diversity among the service.
SHRM Online gathered additional news on the topic.
Black Female Marine General Is Latest in Year of Firsts for Military Women
Mahlock's confirmation caps off a notable year as the higher reaches of the services become more open and diverse. In August, Capt. Amy Bauernschmidt became the first female commanding officer to complete the deployment of a U.S. aircraft carrier. And in July, Lt. Amanda Lee became the first female jet pilot to join the historic demonstration squadron "The Blue Angels."
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