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Annie Oakley Society
Annie Oakley Society Award
Awarded in 2015
Michelle Howard

Michelle Howard

Washington, D.C.

Annie Oakley Society Award

A pioneer in the armed services, Howard is the first woman to achieve the rank of four-star admiral and the first to serve as the Vice Chief of Naval Operations.  “Adm. Howard is the definition of what we honor at the National Cowboy Museum every day,” Museum President Steven Karr said. “The American West is known historically as a challenging frontier; Adm. Howard continues to exemplify a modern-day pioneer spirit by rising to life’s challenges with drive, tenacity and perseverance.”

A few of Howard’s notable assignments have included leading relief efforts in Indonesia, following the 2004 tsunami and directing maritime security operations and multinational counter-piracy efforts off the coast of Somalia in 2009. Her leadership led to the rescue of Maersk Alabama Captain Richard Phillips, made famous in a 2013 film starring Tom Hanks.

“Just as Annie Oakley was a trailblazer of the American West, Adm. Howard has achieved many firsts in her military career,” Annie Oakley Society National Chair Cathy Keating said. “She demonstrates the diversity of experience this award represents, as women leaders come from all backgrounds, races, religions, industries and more, and these women should be honored and positioned for a new generation of young people to look up to them and aspire to be like them.”

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