AN INTRODUCTORY COURSE ON ONLINE EDUCATION

  • Iowa Virtual Academy invites Davenport area parents and students to  information session
  • Families can explore education options prior to the school's Open Enrollment deadline

 

Iowa Virtual Academy (IAVA), a new tuition-free online program of the Clayton Ridge Community School District that offers highly individualized online education for Iowa students in grades K-6, is holding an information session in Davenport this Thursday, February 16. Parents and students are invited to attend the informal meeting to learn more about whether learning through an online public school might be a good alternative to the traditional brick-and-mortar public school.

 

Enrollment in Iowa Virtual Academy is open to students in grades K-6 who reside anywhere in the state of Iowa; however, they must submit an Open Enrollment Application by March 1, 2012 to be eligible to attend IAVA for its inaugural school year in 2012-2013. More details about the enrollment process can be found here: www.k12.com/IAVA/enroll.

 

Iowa Virtual Academy might be the right choice for a variety of students, including:

  • Advanced learners who are either performing above grade level in one or more subjects or are motivated to increase their knowledge beyond the basic course offerings in specific subjects.
  • Students who are seeking relief from bullying, or who have other safety concerns and need a safe and comfortable learning environment.
  • Students from military families, who might be prone to moving and changing schools more often than the average student.
  • Athletes and performers who need classes that can travel with them during practices, rehearsals, and competitions.
  • Struggling students who need more time to grasp concepts, or who may need an environment with fewer distractions.
  • Students looking to get more out of their education

Specific times and dates in the Davenport area are as follows:

 

Thursday, February 16

Hotel Blackhawk

200 E. 3rd Street

Davenport

7:00 p.m.

 

Session attendees will be able to enjoy a short presentation about the program, meet school staff and have all their questions answered by knowledgeable Iowa Virtual Academy staff. For those unable to attend, there is a Live Online Information Session on Tuesday, February 21 at 2:00 p.m. Visit www.k12.com/IAVA for details or call 855.652.3931 with any questions.

 

*If a student is entering school for the first time as a kindergarten student, the Open Enrollment application deadline is September 1, 2012.

 

About Iowa Virtual Academy

Iowa Virtual Academy is an online public school program authorized of the Clayton Ridge Community School District, which uses the award-winning K¹² curriculum to offer Iowa students in grades K-6 an exceptional learning experience. Iowa Virtual Academy's individualized approach gives Iowa kids in grades K-6 the chance to learn in the ways that are right for them.

 

Contact:

George Fiddler

Fast Horse

612-751-4904

 

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CHICAGO - February 14, 2012. To celebrate Valentine's Day, Governor Pat Quinn visited the Mars, Inc. Chicago candy factory to announce the company's recent growth in Illinois. The facility, which has added 65 new jobs, also donated candy to children at the nearby Shriners Hospital for Children. After touring Mars' facility, the Governor visited children at the hospital and hand-delivered Mars candy valentines.

 

"I want to thank Mars for their continued commitment to growing and creating jobs in Illinois," Governor Quinn said. "Right here in Illinois, Mars is manufacturing Snickers, Milky Way and 3 Musketeers and it is only fitting that we celebrate this Valentine's Day with Mars."

 

Mars recently invested $48 million in its Chicago-based factory to create a new line of products and hire 65 employees to work on a new manufacturing line. The factory has been in full production since 1929, and this recent investment extends the company's commitment to another 100 years of growth in Illinois. Mars Chicago-based factory employs about 250 associates and manufactures about 25 million candy bars a day.

 

Governor Quinn toured the factory's new line where employees help produce Mars' world-famous products like 3 Musketeers, Mars Bars, Milky Way and Snickers.

 

After the tour, Governor Quinn visited the nearby Shriners Hospital for Children, which is one of busiest hospitals in the Shriners network. The hospital treats children with orthopedic and neuromusculoskeletal conditions. Patients can also receive treatment for spinal cord injuries and cleft lip and palate. Shriners Hospitals for Children provide specialty healthcare for children around the country, regardless of a patient's ability to pay. Governor Quinn visited children at the hospital today to deliver Valentine's Day candy donated by Mars.

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IA/IL QUAD-CITIES - "It is cruel, you know, that music should be so beautiful. It has the beauty of loneliness and of pain: of strength and freedom." That compelling quote comes from Benjamin Britten, the creator of War Requiem, an epic work that addresses the grim reality of war through stirring, beautiful music.
"War Requiem is a large-scale, non-liturgical setting of the Requiem Mass," said Jared Johnson, Marketing Director of the Quad City Symphony Orchestra (QCSO). "It was composed in 1961 and is a timeless masterpiece that holds great social significance in any era. This powerful work will put hundreds of performers on stage including our orchestra, several college choirs, the Minnestota BoyChoir, and even a secondary chamber orchestra from Detmold, Germany."
The War Requiem will be presented 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 3 at the Adler Theatre, Davenport, IA, and again 2 p.m. Sunday, March 4, at Centennial Hall, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL.
The QCSO, the University of Minnesota School of Music, and the Hochschüle für Musik in Detmold, Germany, under the leadership of QCSO Music Director Mark Russell Smith, have embarked on an international collaboration to perform Britten's War Requiem. This thought-provoking work combines a setting of the Requiem Mass with nine poems by Wilfred Owen, an English poet and World War I soldier.

The War Requiem was written for the 1962 consecration of the newly reconstructed Coventry Cathedral, in Coventry, England, rebuilt after its destruction by the German Air Force during World War II.

A Musical Work of Epic Scale

"The War Requiem is scored for soprano, tenor and baritone soloists, chorus, boys' choir, organ, a full orchestra and a chamber orchestra," said Johnson. To present the work in its full glory, the Quad City Symphony Orchestra production will include the talents of the following individuals and groups:
Mark Russell Smith, Conductor
Caroline Thomas, Soprano
John De Haan, Tenor
Philip Zawisza, Baritone
Chamber Orchestra from Hochschule fur Musik in Detmold, Germany
Karl-Heinz Bloemeke, Chamber Orchestra Conductor
The Minnesota Boychoir
Mark Johnson, Boychoir Conductor
The University of Minnesota Chorale
Kathy Romey, Director
Macalester College Concerti Choir
Matthew Mehaffey, Director
Augustana College Choir
Jon Hurty, Director
Quad City Choral Arts
Jon Hurty, Director
A Life Dedicated to Music
Britten (1913 -1976) was an English composer, conductor, and pianist, as well as a central figure of 20th century British classical music. His first major accomplishment was the 1934 a cappella choral work, A Boy Was Born. Britten gained international fame when his opera, Peter Grimes, premiered in 1945. Other operas by Britten include The Rape of Lucretia, Albert Herring, The Beggar's Opera, Billy Budd, Gloriana, The Turn of the Screw, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and Death in Venice, among others.
War Requiem will be performed in Germany in mid-February and at the University of Minnesota on March 1. The Norwegian Nobel Institute will hold its 23rd annual Nobel Peace Prize Forum in Minnesota from March 1 to 3 to coincide with the University of Minnesota performance. War Requiem will conclude its historic run here in the Quad Cities on March 3 and 4.
For ticket information, call the Quad City Symphony Orchestra Box Office at 563-322-QCSO (7276) or visit www.qcsymphony.com. Members of the military and their families are eligible for free War Requiem tickets through the USO of Illinois.
-- End --
SIDEBAR:

Britten Peace Project: Quad Cities

Inspired by War Requiem, organizations throughout the Quad-Cities have announced projects designed to elucidate the experience, expand upon the context of the War Requiem, and connect the tragic experiences of the 20th century to our own ongoing global conflicts. Britten Peace Project: Quad Cities is sponsored by the Riverboat Development Authority.

In addition to the Quad City Symphony Orchestra's performances of War Requiem, March 3-4, current and forthcoming Britten Peace Project: Quad Cities events include :

Through Friday, February 24:
The German American Heritage Center, Davenport, IA, is presenting "The White Rose," an exhibit which explores one of Germany's most famous civilian resistance groups, formed by university students in Munich in the early 1940s.
6:30 p.m. Friday, February 24:
The Quad City Symphony Orchestra will present War Requiem, a film by Derek Jarman, at the Figge Art Museum, Davenport, IA.
2 to 4 p.m., Every Sunday in February:
The CommUniversity program, held at St. Ambrose University, will feature Britten's War Requiem: Music with History, Poetry, and More. Four Augustana faculty members will help you to fully appreciate the Quad City Symphony Orchestra's performance of War Requiem.
Saturday, February 25, to Sunday, April 15:
The Figge Art Museum, Davenport, IA, will host the War & Remembrance Art Exhibit, featuring the Erwin Eisch Kristallnacht prints.
March is Red Cross Month:
Nationwide, the American Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters a year, providing shelter, food, emotional support and more to those affected. All organizations participating in the Britten Peace Project will be accepting donations on behalf of the American Red Cross of the Quad Cities Area.
5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 1:
At the Hotel Blackhawk, Davenport, the Inside the Music program will feature George Eaton, Army Sustainment Command Historian, describing the British trench experience in World War I and its influence on the poetry of Wilfred Owens.
5:30 p.m. Friday, March 2:
This lecture event will be held in the Caisson Room, Building 60, down the hall from the Rock Island Arsenal Museum. The lecture, British Trench Experience in World War I as Context for the Poetry of Wilfred Owen, will be presented by George Eaton, Arsenal Sustainment Command Historian. The Rock Island Arsenal Island Museum will be open until 5:30 p.m.
2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, March 3:
Ballet Quad Cities will present From the Pages of a Young Girl's Life: The Story of Anne Frank at the Holzworth Performing Arts Center, Davenport North High School. The music for this ballet is made up of a variety of selections by Jewish composers.
6:30 p.m. Saturday, March 3:
During Concert Conversations at the Adler Theatre, Davenport, IA, host Kai Swanson will talk with Mark Russell Smith, QCSO Music Director.
1 p.m. Sunday, March 4:
During Concert Conversations at the Centennial Hall, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL, host Kai Swanson will talk with Mark Russell Smith, QCSO Music Director.
Saturday, March 31, to Monday, May 28:
The Putnam Museum, Davenport, IA, will feature the exhibit, Anne Frank: A History for Today. This powerful exhibit, which includes photographs of the Frank family and other occupants of the Secret Annex, addresses such themes as anti-Semitism, racism, ethnic cleansing, and genocide. As part of the project, the Jewish Federation will host a visit by Holocaust survivor, Eva Geiringer Schloss.
Sunday, April 8, through Tuesday, May 8:
The Rock Island Downtown Public Library will feature Children of the Holocaust by Barbara Powers.
4 p.m. Sunday, April 15:
The Putnam Museum's Giant Screen Theater in Davenport, IA, will show The Rescuers, a film by Michael King.
7 p.m. Sunday, April 22:
Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, is a day for remembering and learning about the horrors of the Holocaust. As part of this remembrance, the Tri-City Jewish Center will feature guest speaker Agnes Schwartz, Holocaust survivor.
7 p.m. Monday, April 23:
In Wallenberg Hall, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL, the Geifman Endowment in Holocaust Studies will present a lecture by Holocaust survivor Agnes Schwartz.
4 p.m. Sunday, May 6:
The Putnam Museum's Giant Screen Theater in Davenport, IA, will feature Nicky's Family, a film by Matej Minac.
-- End --

WASHINGTON - Three Iowa high school seniors have been selected for admission to the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York, according to U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley.

 

Andrew Meyers of Reinbeck, Jindalae Suh of Iowa City, and Sean Steil of Oelwein have been offered places for the 2012-2013 school year.  Grassley nominated these students for appointments.

 

"Admission to the service academies is highly competitive and a great honor," Grassley said.  "Young people like Andrew Meyers, Jindalae Suh and Sean Steil work very hard to earn this kind of opportunity, and I join many others, no doubt, in wishing them well and expressing appreciation for their commitment to serving our nation."

 

Meyers will graduate in May from Gladbrook-Reinbeck High School.  He is the son of Laura and Joel Meyers.  He is a member of National Honor Society, a class officer, and active in youth group, football, basketball, and soccer.

 

Suh will graduate in May from City High School in Iowa City.  She is the daughter of Laura Ctow.  She is a member of National Honor Society and the student council.  She participates in the symphony and concert orchestra, speech, the school newspaper, diving, swimming, and soccer.

 

Steil will graduate in May from Wapsie Valley High School.  He is the son of Karla and John Steil.  He is a member of National Honor Society and the student council.  He is active in talented and gifted programs, the school musical, speech, and golf.

 

For more than 200 years, the U.S. service academies have educated and trained the best and the brightest to lead and command the U.S. armed forces.

 

Information about seeking an academy nomination is posted at http://grassley.senate.gov/info/academy_nominations.cfm.

 

-30-

What: From the Pages of a Young Girls life - The Anne Frank Ballet
Who: Ballet Quad Cities
Where: Holzworth Performing Arts Center, Davenport North High School, 626 W 53rd St. • Davenport IA
When: March 3rd 2:00pm and 8:00pm
Ticket Prices: Adult - $20
Senior - $15
Students & Children $10
How: Tickets may be purchased at www.midwestix.com or at the door. For more information call 309 786-3779 or visit our web site www.BalletQuadCities.com

When Anne Frank received a diary for her thirteenth birthday, she had no idea that her writings would come to symbolize the triumph of the human spirit to people all over the world. When reading her diary, one is touched by the humanity of her story, and how she, in spite of the very extreme circumstances she lived under, was so similar to any other teenager. This is what makes her story so real and so close to us all.

On March 3rd 2012, Ballet Quad Cities will present the encore performance of an original ballet choreographed by Johanne Jakhelln in connection with the traveling exhibit, Anne Frank: A History for Today, and other related programming, created to counter  indifference, prejudice, and racism, as well as to promote the dignity, democratic beliefs, and human rights that are critical in our diverse society today.

The diary comes to life through expressive music from Jewish composers of the 1940's. Contemporary choreography along with superb acting makes this a performance you won't want to miss.

Length of Performance: 60 minutes

Maquoketa Art Experience Exhibits "Small Branch: New Collage" by Mary Zeran

From March 1st to April 13th, 2012, Maquoketa Arts Experience will be exhibiting Small Branch: New Collage by Cedar Rapids, Iowa artist Mary Zeran. The exhibition will held in MAE's Maquoketa 124 S. Main St. space.

Small Branch: New Collage by Mary Zeran, consists of new work Zeran created specifically for the MAE exhibit. "I feel a certain calm when I am in Iowa. There is nothing like driving through the countryside to help me feel grounded and soothed." Zeran said. "When I look at our landscape, I see and hear music and movement. Our landscape is like a wonderful musical passage filled with curves, movement of the wind, and scruffy colorful wildness." Exploring the idea of "place", Zeran is fascinated with what it means to be a native Iowan. Seeing the landscape with fresh eyes after moving back to Iowa in 2005, her boldly colored abstract collage describe the movement, emotions, and rhythm of her native state.

Iowan by birth, Cedar Rapids artist Mary Zeran has lived in 12 different cities including Portland, Or, and Seattle, WA. Her work can be found in permanent collections throughout the state and country. Her collages are created primarily in acrylic on Duralar (an archival acetate) and are known for their juicy colors, and organic forms suspended in multiple layers of glaze. "I am thrilled to be exhibiting at Maquoketa Art experience." said Zeran. " I am inspired by their mission to share art with their local community." .

From March 1st to April 30th, an online version of the exhibition will be posted on Zeran's flickr site at http://www.flickr.com/photos/organize/?start_tab=sets .

An opening reception will be held March 9th, 5pm to 7:30pm at Maquoketa Arts Experience, 124 S. Main St., Maquoketa, IA 52060

For further information about Mary Zeran's work including dates and times for upcoming exhibitions, please visit her website at www.maryzeran.com or email zeranm@earthlink.net

For more information call: Maquoketa Art Experience (563)652-9925 or visit http://www.maquoketa-art.org/

High resolution color images available on request.

Gilda's Club and Genesis Cancer Care Institute are partnering to offer Cancer Transitions™ is a free 2 hour, six-week workshop designed to help cancer survivors make the transition from active treatment to post-treatment care.  Expert panelists including physicians, nutritionists and fitness experts will discuss exercise tailored to each participant's abilities, training in relaxation and stress management and tips for nutritious eating. Cancer Transitions will answer many of your questions about cancer survivorship post-cancer treatment.  The course covers the following topics:

Session 1: Get Back to Wellness: Take Control of Your Survivorship

Session 2: Exercise for Wellness: Customized Exercise

Session 3: Emotional Health and Well-Being: From Patient to Survivor

Session 4: Nutrition Beyond Cancer

Session 5: Medical Management Beyond Cancer: What You Need to Know

Session 6: Life Beyond Cancer

Date: Wednesday, March 7 (meets for 6 weeks)

Time: 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Location: Gilda's Club Quad Cities, 1234 E. River Dr,  Davenport, IA 52803

Contact for more information or to sign up: Melissa Wright, 563-326-7504 or melissa@gildasclubqc.org

Cancer Transitions is a program of the Cancer Support Community and LiveStrong™

 

Iowa City, IA -Diamonds or Denim, Riverside Theatre's annual fundraising gala, will include a new and unique element this year, one-of-a-kind birdhouses.

The birdhouses were decorated by local artists, community members, members of Riverside Theatre's Board of Directors and patrons of the theatre and look like anything but ordinary birdhouses.

Using paint, paper, cloth, lights, feathers, beads, metal and repurposed materials, the birdhouses have been transformed by their designers into original pieces of art.

"When we distributed birdhouses to area artists and friends of Riverside - we had no idea they would come back to us with such unique designs," said Riverside Theatre Artistic Director Jody Hovland.  "They are truly one-of-a-kind art objects - who would have thought a simple wooden birdhouse would generate such wildly imaginative and whimsical ideas?"

The only way to see these creative creations is to come to Diamonds or Denim.

The birdhouses will be part of the table decorations at this year's fundraising gala and will be sold within the evening's silent auction.

This year's Diamonds or Denim will be held at hotelVetro suites & conference center in the Plaza Towers, 201 S. Linn St. Iowa City, on Friday, February 24, starting at 6 p.m.

The event features a silent auction, live auction, raffle drawing, music by Iowa City's most eclectic ensemble The Recliners, appetizers and desserts provided by local eateries, and a cash bar.

This year's raffle offers two fabulous prizes. The first raffle prize is a 14K two-toned white and yellow gold diamond bracelet. The second raffle prize is a $1,000 Visa ® Gift Card, usable anywhere Visa is accepted. Raffle tickets are $10 each or 3 for $25 and can be purchased by calling 319-338-7672. Raffle tickets will also be for sale at the event.

The professional live auction by Sharpless Auction offers a wide variety of unique experiences including dinners, excursions, accommodations in popular vacation destinations, and parties.

The silent auction will feature many unique items including jewelry, art, autographed books, handmade creations, and much more.

Regular tickets for Diamonds on Denim are $55 each ($45/ticket is tax-deductible) and tables of 10 are available for $500 ($40/ticket is tax-deductible). Discounted tickets are available for Riverdog Pass Holders for $50 each ($40/ticket is tax-deductible). Tickets can be purchased online at www.riversidetheatre.org, by phone at (319) 338-7672 or at the Riverside Theatre Box Office. The Box Office is located at 213 N. Gilbert St, Iowa City. Box Office Hours are: 12 - 4 p.m. Monday - Friday. Tickets can also be purchased at the door the night of the event. Tables of 10 must be arranged through the Box Office.

All proceeds from the evening will support Riverside Theatre programming.

 ###

Are Mutts Smarter Than Purebred Dogs?
How to Choose Your New Best Friend from an Animal Shelter

Among the biggest victims of the economic recession are the once beloved family pets surrendered to shelters as their owners deal with extended joblessness. The U.S. Humane Society estimates 6 to 8 million dogs and cats enter shelters each year - and 3 to 4 million are euthanized.

"We don't have firm numbers but we know anecdotally that the communities that have been hardest hit by the economic downturn are seeing that reflected in their shelter intake numbers," says Inga Fricke, director of sheltering issues for the U.S. Humane Society.

"And, unfortunately, while the majority of the public is in favor of adopting pets from shelters, very few - usually about 20 percent - actually do. That has recently gone up slightly to the mid-20s."

Fricke and retired police officer Irvin Cannon, a confirmed dog lover whose new book, For the Love of Dog Tales (www.FortheLoveofDogTales.com), gives voice to man's best friend, hope people getting back on their feet will consider adopting a shelter dog.

"You won't find a better companion, whether you bring home a mystery mixed-breed or a purebred Labrador," he says. "Everyone thinks mutts are smarter and generally healthier, but really, it all depends on their mix of breeds and which breed strain is dominant."

Border collies and Rottweilers are two of the smartest breeds, Cannon says. But they tend to have other traits, too, which are just as important to consider when choosing what dog best suits your lifestyle. Remember - dogs are as individual as people. A dog's breed, or breed mix, is no guarantee that it will have certain traits.

That said, border collies tend to need lots of room to run and lots of attention - they're high-maintenance, Cannon says. If you can't spend a lot of active time with them, they'll be unhappy and you'll have problems.

Rottweilers are fast learners and loveable family animals, but they also tend to have bold personalities associated with pack leaders. If you don't think you can assert your authority, or if you have young or shy children, you might want to consider a more submissive breed. Dominant dogs that are allowed to bully their family members can become dangerously aggressive.

Here are some other tidbits regarding breeds:

• Among other dog breeds known for intelligence: Shetland sheepdogs, golden retrievers, Labrador retrievers, poodles, Australian cattle dogs, Papillons and Doberman pinschers.

• Bulldogs, beagles and Basset hounds all start with 'B' but get much lower grades for smarts.

• It's a myth that mutts have fewer health issues than purebred dogs. Because some breeds have tendencies toward problems such as deafness, blindness or hip dysplasia, remember, these are genetic issues that are inherited. So if you're mixed-breed includes some German shepherd, it may also have hip dysplasia (a problem with the joint's bone structure).

• If you're in the market for a purebred dog, you have a 25 percent chance of finding one - although maybe not the breed you want - at a shelter. If your heart is set on a specific breed, check your area for a rescue group specializing in that breed.

About Irvin Cannon

Irvin Cannon was a poor kid growing up in Detroit when his family took in a stray dog. It surprised young Irvin that his father would be willing to share the family's meager groceries with a dog, but he soon discovered the return on their investment was enormous. A former police officer in Detroit and Denver, he also worked as a corrections officer in Arizona.

Braley Urges Pentagon to Remove Remaining Barriers to Women's Military Service

Military announced review to relax policies last week, but women still face restrictions

 

Washington, DC - Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today urged Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to remove all remaining barriers restricting the service of female members of the US Armed Forces.

 

Last week, the Department of Defense announced that it was revising its Combat Exclusion Policy to allow women to serve in expanded roles in the military.  Braley applauded the move.  However, even with the revisions, women will still be prohibited from serving in combat roles.

 

"The Pentagon's experience in Iraq and Afghanistan over the last decade should forever remove any doubt of the ability of women to serve in military combat roles," Braley said.  "Veterans like Tammy Duckworth, who piloted a combat helicopter over Iraq and earned the Purple Heart and Air Medal for her service, to Leigh Ann Hester, who earned the Silver Star for her valor when her convoy was attacked by Iraqi insurgents, to Iowa's own Alex Jansen, who was awarded the Bronze Star for her service in Iraq, have demonstrated the capabilities of women on the battlefield.  It's time to remove these barriers once and for all and fully acknowledge that women have a place in the military, serving right alongside men."

 

The Pentagon's Combat Exclusion Policy has also had the effect of preventing women from climbing the ranks of military leadership.   In over 200 years of American military history, only two women have been nominated to 4-star command positions.

 

Braley made the request in a letter to Secretary Panetta, the text of which follows.  A copy of the letter can be downloaded at the following link: http://go.usa.gov/Qyu

 

--

 

The Honorable Leon Panetta

Secretary of Defense

1000 Defense Pentagon

Washington, D.C. 20301

 

Dear Secretary Panetta,

 

I am writing today to commend the Department of Defense for their recent review of the Combat Exclusion Policy restricting the service of female members of the U.S. Armed Forces. While the decision to loosen the restrictions on women serving in combat is a good step forward, the review can and should go further to remove all of the barriers in place.

 

The last decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan has proven that women are more than capable of serving in the combat arms.  Since 2001, despite standing prohibitions on women in combat, a number of American women have distinguished themselves in combat earning numerous military awards.  Female combat pilots, allowed to serve in those roles since the mid-90s, have proven themselves flying sorties in support of operations around the world.  Most recently, Female Engagement Teams in Afghanistan have been a vital part of our counterinsurgency effort to better connect with the female civilian population.

 

The Department's review can and should go further to promote equality by permitting those women who are willing and able to serve in combat roles.  The last decade should remove any question on the ability of women to serve and arguments against their service are nothing more than bureaucratic blustering at its worst. Despite claims to the contrary, one needs only look at the list of promotions by the military services to recognize that advancement to the highest echelons of command is tied to experience in the combat arms.  In the over 200 years of our nation's history, only two women have been nominated to 4-star command positions. To truly ensure equality in our armed forces, women must be allowed to fight.

 

I appreciate your attention to this matter, and look forward to your continued work to reform the Department of Defense to ensure that we have the best fighting force that we possibly can, and that we are not turning away qualified and capable warriors for any reason.

 

Sincerely,

 

Bruce Braley

Member of Congress

 

Cc: Dr. Jo Ann Rooney, Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness

 

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