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Immediate Release

Department of Defense Releases Annual Demographics Report — Upward Trend in Number of Women Serving Continues

While the overall size of our military remained steady, the percentage of women serving on active duty and in the Reserve component continues to grow in both the enlisted and commissioned ranks, according to the newly released 2021 Demographics Profile of the Military Community.

The annual demographics report contains the latest publicly available information on the makeup of the military community, including military members and their dependents. Data highlighted in the report includes information from all services, including gender, race, age, education, family members, pay grades and other important facts.

Data from the 2021 report can also be viewed in a fully interactive dashboard that allows users to select and view the latest available demographic data by various criteria, such as service branch, gender, pay grade and state of current residence.

In 2021, women made up 17.3% of the active-duty force, totaling 231,741 members; and 21.4% of the National Guard and reserves at 171,000 members. The year before, women made up 17.2% of the active-duty force and 21.1% of the Guard and reserve. Since 2017, the percentages of women in the active-duty and selected reserve have risen 1.1% and 1.8% respectively. 

To capture data unique to women in active military service, the 2021 demographics profile features an interactive "Women in the Military" infographic to display key demographics related to their personal, family and military life.  

"The over 3 million women who have served in or with the armed forces since the American Revolution have contributed immensely to the strength and resilience of our armed forces," said' Patricia Montes Barron, deputy assistant secretary of defense for military community and family policy. "The annual demographics profile reports provide a lens on the ever-changing diversity of our armed forces, providing essential information for policymakers, researchers and other organizations who contribute to the readiness and well-being of the military community," 

The annual demographics report is available on Military OneSource.