Breaking barriers, forging women’s discourse Published Aug. 31, 2023 By Airman 1st Class Keira Rossman 47th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- Team XL celebrated Women's Equality Day with a luncheon and guest speaker that provided a platform for women to discuss their experiences within the military Aug. 30, 2023. This event, echoing the legacy of those who fought for gender equality, showcases the 47th Flying Training Wing’s commitment to fostering a culture of inclusion and progress. "Equality knows no gender," said Staff Sgt. Gabrielle Moore, non-commissioned officer in charge of the 434th Flying Training Squadron administration, and narrator of the luncheon. "Every individual, regardless of their background, holds the same rights and potential." At this luncheon, women from various ranks and roles within Team XL came together to hear guest speaker, retired Chief Master Sgt. Kimberly Grewe, who is now a middle school counseling secretary. Grewe spoke about her struggles throughout her 28-year-long security forces career and persistent struggles of the past while also highlighting the strides made toward a more equitable future. "Historically, the military has been a male-dominated profession, with deep-rooted gender bias," said Grewe. "These biases can manifest in subtle ways, affecting promotions, assignments, and opportunities. Despite remarkable progress, there remain hurdles that we must collectively overcome. It's not enough to merely acknowledge the women's contribution. ”We must actively promote an environment where every individual, regardless of gender, can thrive and succeed based on skills, determination, and dedication." The luncheon served as a reminder that progress is ongoing and that every voice contributes to the narrative of change. "As women, we stand united to amplify each other's strengths, working hand in hand to accomplish our goals," said Moore. "Together, we empower, uplift, and pave the way for a future where collaboration knows no bounds." Guided by a visionary goal, Laughlin Air Force Base seeks to empower Airmen to become the world's finest pilots within an environment that champions dignity and respect. "I had to prove myself repeatedly demonstrating competence, resilience, and commitment," said Grewe. "Equality is a matter of respect, empowerment and opportunity. It means fostering an atmosphere where diversity is just not tolerated, but it's celebrated. Where women are given the same opportunities, our Air Force becomes stronger, more innovative, and better equipped to face the challenges of the future." An integral component of this vision involves the Integrated Resilience and Prevention Center, which identifies and eliminates obstacles to reporting. The base enhances its overall mission readiness by nurturing an atmosphere where reporting concerns is both welcomed and safe. The heart of this effort lies in cultivating a culture where dignity and respect are not just aspirations but the cornerstones of daily interactions. "I challenge each and every one of us to be advocates for change," said Grewe. "Advocates for policies that ensure equal opportunities, advocates for conversations that challenge stereotypes, and advocates for an environment where individuals are judged by their abilities rather than the preconceived notions."