Magazine article National Defense

Women in Defense, A National Security Organization

Magazine article National Defense

Women in Defense, A National Security Organization

Article excerpt

Cultivating and supporting the advancement and recognition of women in all aspects of national security is the purpose of Women In Defense, A National Security Organization. Members of this professional organization, including men and women, have careers related to the defense of the United States and national security.

Women In Defense is an affiliate of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA). WID members automatically become members of NDIA.

Members represent three main categories: defense companies and other businesses, all branches of the armed forces, plus federal agencies and academia, associations and professional services.

Members receive:

* Opportunities for professional development.

* A forum for exchanging ideas and experiences.

* A vehicle for expanding professional networks

* Entree to distinguished government and industry officials in open discussions.

* A source for scholarships and mentoring through the Horizons Foundation.

The association is a non-profit 501(c)(6) corporation established in 1985. A volunteer-run organization, it is governed by a board of directors elected by the membership. Appointed committees help carry out the association's mission.

Chapters exist in several parts of the nation, and others are being considered. Chapters represent a local means of serving members and the defense community and fulfilling the association's mission. Chapters host programs in cooperation with local military installations, provide professional development for members through leadership opportunities and support community-based charities, members of the armed forces, and defense-related educational pursuits.

Some chapters have developed around military installations. The Iowa/Illinois Chapter is centered around Rock Island Arsenal, Ill., and the Picatinny Chapter attracts employees from Picatinny Arsenal, N.J. The majority of these members are military or government. In southern Maryland, industry representatives make up the majority of the Chesapeake Bay Chapter, which draws participants from the Naval Air Station Patuxent River and supporting defense industry. In the Tennessee Valley Chapter, where just over half the members represent industry, activities center around Huntsville, Ala. The Capital Chapter centers around Washington, D.C.

Women In Defense experienced a 74 percent growth during its most recently completed fiscal year, which ended March 31. At that time, the membership exceeded 600. Most of this growth was attributable to the development of four chapters since late 2001.

Horizons Foundation

Horizons is a Women In Defense foundation established to encourage the pursuit of careers in support of national defense and national security. …

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