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Bridging the Military-Civilian Divide

February 10,2015

Indiana Women Veterans Have a New Coordinator

mckee1-480x600-1Indiana has over 33,000 women veterans and the State has hired a veteran from Grissom’s 434th Air Refueling Wing to be the new Indiana Women Veterans Coordinator.

In the 25 years since she enlisted, Senior Master Sgt. Laura McKee watched the male dominated military open up more to women. Her career began in transportation, then was the only female jet engine mechanic, and for a while she was the only female refueler.

“So sure, I welcomed another female boom operator coming in,” McKee said. “It’s like, yes! Finally!”

McKee says a lot of Hoosier female veterans don’t take advantage of services that are available to them because they don’t identify themselves as being veterans.

“The number one thing to realize is that you have been in the military,” McKee said. “You deserve these benefits.”

McKee understands there are times when a woman will seek out another woman for advice – as in the case of military sexual trauma.

“It’s more comforting – and have their feelings in the situation validated by saying, ‘I have help for you,” McKee said.

One of McKee’s goals is to reach out through the web. She encourages all women veterans to go to www.IN.gov and register and get connected to resources.

Meanwhile, legislation to tighten language to keep the Indiana Women Veterans Coordinator position from being eliminated at some point in the future passed the Indiana Senate but has stalled in the House.

Learn more at http://www.wfyi.org/news/articles/indiana-women-veterans-have-a-new-coordinator