In 1999, Congress designated the month of May as Military Appreciation Month to recognize and reflect on the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families who serve and have served this great country of ours. This month is to celebrate and honor the contributions of those who are a part of and have been a part of the US Armed Forces and the contributions they have made in preserving our way of life. Many organizations and communities around the country are celebrating this month in various ways to recognize our Active Duty members and their families, our Reserve Component members and their families and our Veterans and their families.
Join Living Your Best Life as we celebrate "HERstroy...Women In the Military" for the next few weeks. We will hear from military women, active and veterans, who are daughters, wives, mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, and friends. Women from the Marines, Army, Air Force, and Navy will share personal stories and highlights from their military careers. All have roles that made them the "first" in many endeavors throughout their lives and in the military. We will hear about their many acts of courage and sacrifice that embody servant leadership that will empower, inspire, and motivate listeners.
On Saturday, May 26,2012, we will hear from Colonel Many-Bears Grinder, the first female to become Commissioner of Tennessee Department of Veteran Affairs. Colonel Grinder will share stories from her military career. We will hear her humble spirit as she shares about serving the troops even before she enlisted. Colonel Grinder will share how being a female made her determined to be successful and why she purposely selected non-traditional women roles throughout her military career.
As Memorial Day approaches, Colonel Grinder will share intimately why we should never forget the many sacrifices that are made daily for our country by our men and women in the military.
This three part series will have a "few surprises" as well. Tune into 760AM in the Middle Tennessee Region, streaming live online at UStream.TV and on military bases on Saturdays from 9:00-10am CST.
More About Commissioner Many-Bears Grinder TN Depart of Veterans Affairs
In January 2011, Governor Bill Haslam selected Many-Bears Grinder to be the Commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs, the first female in the State to serve in this capacity. She is responsible for the operation of the Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs’ Field Offices, Claims Office, and four State Veterans Cemeteries. She is also an ex-officio voting member of the Tennessee State Veterans Home Board, which controls the three existing State Veterans Homes, and plans for future homes in Tennessee. Commissioner Grinder serves as the Southeast District Vice President for the National Association of State Directors of Veterans Affairs.
In order to accept the State post, Grinder retired from the Tennessee Army National Guard as a Colonel with over 35 years of service. She is an Operation Enduring Freedom combat veteran, having served as the Head of Secretariat for the International Police Coordination Board. She traveled throughout Afghanistan, working with international diplomats and police as well as the Afghan leaders and local police officers, to ensure standardized training and equipment for the Afghan Police.
Grinder was inducted into the Fort Benning Hall of Fame in 2004. She is a graduate of the Command and General Staff College, the U.S. Army War College, and the Joint Forces Staff College. Her military awards include the Legion of Merit and the Bronze Star Medal.
Grinder holds a Master’s Degree in Strategic Studies from the Army War College and a Master’s Degree in Human Resources Development from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
Commissioner Grinder is a member of numerous military and Veterans associations, including AMVETS, Vietnam Veterans of America, Women Veterans of America, Military Officers Association, the National Guard Association of the United States and is also a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion and the Disabled American Veterans.
A native of Salt Lake City, Utah, Grinder moved to Tennessee in 1989 where she met and married Ernie Grinder.
Previous HERstory: Colonel Jacqueline Nave found here.
Photo credits: Photos from Memorial Day 2011, Tennessee Dept of Veteran Affairs