March 10th - Women Veteran Leaders: Continuing To Serve

- 3/4/2021

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In celebration of Women’s History Month, join the War Memorial Center, in partnership with the Milwaukee VA Medical Center’s mental health team, for our "Continuing to Serve” panel in support of Operation 30:20.
The panel will feature four female veterans, discussing their transition to civilian life and how the military influenced their paths to leadership.

The panelists:
• Maj. Gen. Marcia Anderson, U.S. Army Reserve, 1975-2016. In 2008, Anderson became the highest-ranking African American woman in the Army when she was promoted to brigadier general. In 2011, she became the first African American woman to receive two stars as a major general in the Army. Anderson retired from the military in 2016 as deputy chief of the Army Reserve. 

• Mary M. Kolar, Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs, U.S. Navy, 1980-2008. Kolar served on active duty for 28 years, retiring as a captain (O-6). During her military career, she served in various command and staff positions across the nation, spending much of her time recruiting, training, educating and leading sailors.

• Dr. Berdie Cowser, (photo above) U.S. Army Reserve, 1993-2009. Cowser completed her advanced individual training at Fort Lee in Virginia. After earning her first degree, she was commissioned as a second lieutenant and completed her Quartermaster Officer Basic Course in 2000. Cowser now serves as the Vice President of Housing and Development at the Center for Veterans Issues. Cowser is also a current member of the War Memorial Center’s Board of Trustees.

• Bonnie P. Freudinger, U.S. Air Force, 1987-2009. Freudinger has 22 years of military service in aircraft maintenance, including six years active duty, four years civil service as an Air Reserve technician (drilling reservist and full-time civilian supporting same aircraft) and 12 years as a drilling reservist. She has been deployed around the world. She is now a biomedical engineer, designing, fabricating and repairing medical research equipment at the Medical College of Wisconsin.


The moderator will be Dona Drew, U.S. Marine Corps veteran and current staff member of the Milwaukee VA Medical Center’s Southeastern Wisconsin Task Force on Veteran Suicide Prevention.