She's Set To Be The First Black Woman To Serve As A Marine General

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Col. Lorna Mahlock, commanding officer, MACG-18, talking to Marines during Exercise Valiant Shield 16, Sept. 14, 2016.
Marine Corps / Lance Cpl. Makenzie Fallon.

In a history-making move, Col. Lorna Mahlock has been nominated to become the Marine Corps’ first female African-American general officer.


Mahlock, 49, has served in the prestigious post of deputy director of plans, policies and operations since July 2017.  Her next assignment will be announced later if she is confirmed by the Senate, according to the Marine Corps. She was nominated on April 10 to get her first star.

After joining the Corps as an enlisted Marine in 1985, Mahlock was commissioned in 1991 and became an air traffic control officer. She went on to deploy in support of operations in Iraq three times with Marine Tactical Air Command Squadron 38: First as a company commander from November 2002 to May 2003; then as an operations officer from February 2004 to May 2004; and finally as commanding officer from January 2008 to January 2009.

Her military awards include the Iraq Campaign Medal, Legion of Merit Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Joint Service Achievement Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Korean Defense Service Medal, and Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.

Bravo Zulu, Col. Mahlock!

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