Inaugural Department of the Air Force Women’s Air and Space Power Symposium announced

  • Published
  • Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

ARLINGTON, Va. (AFNS) -- Airmen and Guardians will have the opportunity to participate in the inaugural Department of the Air Force Women’s Air and Space Power Symposium virtual professional development series March 8-11, during Women’s History Month.

This four-day event is sponsored by the Department of the Air Force Office of Diversity and Inclusion in partnership with the Women's Initiative Team and is open to all Total Force men and women.

“This event is critical to building the Airmen, Guardians, and leaders we need, focused on improving our force readiness and taking care of all our Airmen and Guardians. We’ve lined up a variety of leaders from across our force to highlight a culture of inclusion that leverages our nation’s unique diversity into a strategic advantage,” said Lt. Gen. Mary O’Brien, deputy chief of staff for Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance and Cyber Effects Operations for the Air Force and general officer champion of the Women’s Initiatives Team.

Designed to inspire meaningful action, the purpose of the symposium is to engage participants in conversations about inclusion of servicewomen and to better understand the impact of inclusion on readiness and culture. During the event, participants will have an opportunity to discuss topics that affect servicewomen and to hear from senior leaders, Airmen, Guardians and subject matter experts.

The theme of this event echoes the priorities of the Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown, Jr., to ‘accelerate change or lose’ and Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond’s priorities of ‘lean, agile, and mission focused.’

“The Women’s Air and Space Power Symposium was specifically designed to be interactive, providing participants an opportunity to listen and engage at all levels on key topics affecting servicewomen. This is also an opportunity to embrace inclusivity, and acknowledge that diversity is much more than demographic diversity; thought, age, gender, approach, and diverse backgrounds matter,” said Tawanda R. Rooney, acting senior advisor of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. “I liken diversity and inclusion to a marathon and not a sprint. For change to root, it will not happen overnight, but events like this offer a more direct avenue to understand the issues, thus helping to shape our efforts as we move forward.”

This professional development opportunity is free to all Department of the Air Force civilian employees, cadets, and all active duty, Air Force Reserve, and Air National Guard uniformed Airmen and Guardians.

Sessions will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. EST. Members should confirm with leadership that they are permitted to attend during duty hours.

Agenda (tentative; subject to change)
Monday, March 8
9 a.m. Symposium Launch & Keynote Speaker: Lt. Gen. Mary O’Brien
10 a.m. Leading Airmen & Guardians Boldly
11 a.m. How to Make Change in a Bureaucracy
12 p.m. We Stand on the Shoulders of Giants
1 p.m. Military Sexual Trauma: Changing the Narrative
2 p.m. Less Talking About Diversity and Inclusion and More Doing
3 p.m. Open Forum: What Do You Want Commanders to Know

Tuesday, March 9
9 a.m. Keynote Speaker (to be announced)
10 a.m. Maintaining a Competitive Edge through Diversity and Inclusion
11 a.m. Servicewomen’s Health
12 p.m. Beyond Bystanders: How Men Can Be Allies
1 p.m. Infertility and Perinatal Loss: Resources and Support
2 p.m. Keynote Speaker (to be announced)
3 p.m. Open Forum: What Do You Want Commanders to Know

Wednesday, March 10
9 a.m. Keynote Speaker (to be announced)
10 a.m. The Behavioral Health of Active Duty Servicewomen
11 a.m. Childcare, 24/7 Operations, and COVID Impacts on Women in the Workplace
12 p.m. Retaining Women: Why It Matters
1 p.m. Schulte Assembly: Cadet Perspective
2 p.m. Intersectionality: Understanding Identity & Leveraging Strengths
3 p.m. Open Forum: What Do You Want Commanders to Know

Thursday, March 11
9 a.m. Keynote Speaker (to be announced)
10 a.m. Women, Peace, and Security
11 a.m. Organic Mentoring
12 p.m. Discovering Resilience
1 p.m. Representation Matters
2 p.m. Symposium Close and Keynote Speaker: Gen. Jacqueline D. Van Ovost
3 p.m. Open Forum: What Do You Want Commanders to Know

Participants can find more information on the Women’s Air and Space Power Symposium social media pages.