Women's Equality Day Celebrated at the Detroit Arsenal
September 5, 2012
"Celebrating Women's Right to Vote," was the theme for the Women's Equality Day program held August 21 in the Building 200 Auditorium at the Detroit Arsenal. The program was sponsored jointly by the U.S. Army Garrison-Detroit Arsenal and the U.S. Army Tank Automotive, Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC). This year marks the 92nd anniversary of the passage of the 19th amendment to the United States Constitution on August 26, 1920. This amendment granted women the right to vote for the first time in our nation's history.
The guest speaker was Jill Washburn, weather anchor for WWJ-TV in Detroit, who has served the broadcast community in the Detroit area for many years. She started in Detroit reporting for Metro Networks and at WDIV-TV as a helicopter reporter and fill-in news anchor. Along the way, she has also been heard on many of the top radio stations in the Detroit market, including WWJ, WJR and WXYT. Not content to stop there, she took on the mid-day shift at Lite Rock 93.9-FM, where she hosted the station's most popular show. She also worked with JJ and Lynne on the WCSX-FM morning show.
Washburn spoke about some of the challenges she has faced throughout her career and shared some of her thoughts on women's right to vote and being a role model. One point that seemed to stand out was the importance of taking advantage of opportunities when they come along. "If you focus only on one door, waiting for it to open," she said, "you will not see the other doors that are opening all around you and you will miss many opportunities." At the conclusion of her presentation, Washburn responded to several questions from the audience.
Washburn is an avid runner who attended Michigan State University on a track/cross-country scholarship. She won two All-American titles and set a Big Ten record during her tenure there. She graduated from MSU with a degree in Art. In her free time, she is a writer, an inventor, an artist and a stand-up comic. She is also a wife and mother of a young daughter, and loves renovating houses and baking.
Other program participants were: Barbara J. Stallworth, DoD Observances Manager for U.S. Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC), was the Mistress of Ceremonies; Deanna L. Love, Robotic System Joint Project Office, sang the National Anthem; and TACOM LCMC Command Chaplain Colonel Stephen P. DeMien, delivered the invocation.
TACOM LCMC Chief of Staff Colonel Ronald J. Shun introduced the guest speaker and presented her with a two-star note, signed by TACOM LCMC Commander Major General Michael J. Terry at the conclusion of her presentation. Washburn also received a certificate of appreciation from TARDEC, signed by Marta Tomkiw, Chief of Staff, and a coin from Alan Parks, Garrison Manager.