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Cammermeyer Named to Defense Committee

Cammermeyer Named to Defense Committee


The highest-ranking military member to be discharged for being gay has been named to the Defense Department's Advisory Committee on Women in the Services.

Retired Army Reserve Col. Margarethe Cammermeyer was named to the group Wednesday after the department decided to expand the 49-year-old committee to 35 members from 15.

"This committee will be more robust to better address emerging and existing issues concerning our women in uniform, and Secretary Gates and I look forward to their continued efforts in this important endeavor," Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Clifford Stanley said in a statement.

The committee was established in 1951 during the Korean War to address retention, recruitment, treatment, employment, integration, and other issues.

Cammermeyer, a member of the Washington National Guard, was dishonorably discharged in 1992 after disclosing that she was a lesbian, before the "don't ask, don't tell" policy existed. She filed a lawsuit and a federal district judge ruled her discharge unconstitutional, which allowed her to serve openly as a lesbian until she retired in 1997.

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