A second female, and the first active-duty female officer, is scheduled to graduate this week from the vigorous Special Forces Qualification Course and don her Green Beret. She will be heading to a Group very soon.

Her classmates had many positive things to say about her. Some words to describe her were “great,” “just one of the guys,” and “carries her own weight.” With her hair cut very short, it’s hard to pick her out in the crowd.

In June 2020, a female National Guard soldier graduated and donned the coveted Green Beret. She was the first woman to have completed the modern Special Forces pipeline and was able to join an operational team owing to President Obama’s move to open all military jobs to women. This marked a significant moment for women across the force. Because of this historic milestone, and for the safety of the graduate, her graduation ceremony was held in a closed hangar to conceal her identity. As a Special Forces Engineer Sergeant (18C) with the 3rd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group, that female Green Beret hopes to go active duty.

In the early 1980s, another female, Captain Katie Wilder, completed the officer’s version of the SFQC. But her graduation and right to wear the Green Beret was mired in controversy and rumors. For decades there wasn’t an authoritative, evidence-based piece to prove once and for all that Cpt. Wilder had indeed earned the honor of wearing the Green Beret (and the Special Forces tab once it was authorized).