U.S. Army Ranger Association
Position on Female Graduates from Ranger School

The question has arisen as to whether the U.S. Army Ranger Association (USARA) will take a position with respect to the integration of women into Ranger School, what impact the potential graduation of female students may have upon the Association, and whether USARA will present an award, gift, or special recognition to any of the female students at graduation, if they ultimately graduate.  This statement responds to each of those three questions.

Rangers have historically been strong-willed and self-reliant individuals. One might also add that we also tend to be very opinionated when it comes to personal, religious, and political view – which run gamut of the spectrum.  Despite these differences, Rangers and Ranger units have succeeded because of our common belief in the nation and our dedication to supporting the mission.  USARA’s mission, as outlined in its Constitution, is to support the Ranger community as that community is defined by the U.S. Army.  The Association takes no position on the integration of women into Ranger School, and leaves matters regarding the structure and composition of US forces – including at both the tactical and training levels – to those who are responsible for making such decisions. Notwithstanding the same, we are impressed with the efforts of ARTB’s leadership and cadre in carrying out the task they have been assigned, and remain available to assist in any way we can.

This past spring the US Army implemented a program to assess the integration of women into Ranger School.  Of the nineteen women who qualified to enter the course, three remain and two have reached the final Florida phase. Article III, Section 1 of the USARA Constitution provides that “[m]embership in this Association shall be open to all who have earned the title US. Army Ranger…” Further, as provided in Article III, Section 1.A.1. of the bylaws, “[t]hose who have been awarded the Ranger Tab, on order of the Department of Army” are entitled to regular membership in the Association. Accordingly, if any of the three female students who remain in Ranger School graduate, including either of the two currently in the Florida phase scheduled to graduate on August 21, then she will not only be entitled to wear the Ranger Tab but will also qualify for membership in USARA. If she chooses to apply for membership, her application will be accepted, processed, and granted in the same fashion as any other qualified Ranger.

Finally, USARA will not present an award, gift, or special recognition to any of the female students at graduation, if they ultimately graduate.  Communications with Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade (ARTB) leadership throughout this time period have made clear that the unit has taken every reasonable step to ensure that integration of women into Ranger School has been as gender-less an experience as possible.  USARA will not undermine those efforts by injecting gender into the equation at graduation by providing a special recognition, award, or gift on the basis of a student’s gender.  Doing so would not only undermine the efforts of ARTB’s leadership and cadre, but also undermine the experience for the female graduate(s), who by-and-large have indicated that they want to be held to the same standards as their male classmates, and not treated differently.

Direct all questions or comments to Travis West by email at travis.west@ranger.org or by telephone at (608) 561-1779.

USARA Executive Committee (August 5, 2015) :

Travis James West            Mike Ranger
President                         Executive Vice President

Rick Yost                         Bob Kvederas
Secretary                         Treasurer

 

 

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