Talk with the Experts: Women, Peace and Security with Admiral Michelle Howard, moderated by Dr. Shirley Graham

On Tuesday, October 15, the Elliott School hosted the Shapiro Lecture Series on Women, Peace and Security with Admiral Michelle Howard.
Admiral Michelle J. Howard has served 35 years in the United States Navy. She has led sailors and Marines multiple times in her career as the commander of a ship, an expeditionary strike group, a task force and a Naval theater. In 1999, she became the first African American woman to command a ship in the Navy. In 2014, she was the first woman to become a four-star Admiral in the U.S. Navy, and the first woman to be appointed to the position of Vice Chief of Naval Operations. She is the first African American woman to reach the rank of three- and four-stars in the U.S. Armed Forces.
She  presented her analysis of the United States Strategy on Women, Peace and Security. In her opinion, the strategy can be strengthened if specific agencies are responsible for parts of the plan rather than directing various federal agencies to create action plans “that cover [its] entire portfolio.”

According to her, the lines of effort are to:

(1) support the meaningful participation of women in conflict and crisis decision-making;

(2) promote the protection of women and their access to safety from violence, abuse and exploitation around the world

(3) adjust U.S. programming to improve equality outcomes for women; and

(4) encourage partner governments to adopt policies that improve the meaningful participation of women in peace and security decision-making institutions.

GEIA Director, Dr. Shirley Graham, and Associate Professor of Practice in International Affairs, moderated the discussion. Her doctoral research has examined gendering processes within militaries that position women and men in particular roles formally and informally, supporting and/or inhibiting women’s access to peacekeeping missions.
Established by the J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Foundation, the Shapiro Professorship in International Affairs seeks to appoint distinguished figures in diplomacy whose experiences and reputations bring an added measure of excellence to teaching and scholarship within the Elliott School.

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