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Immediate Release

New Members Appointed to the DACOWITS

This week, the Department of Defense announced the appointment of eight new members to the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services (DACOWITS). The committee comprises a maximum of 20 members, including military retirees, veterans, and civilian women and men from academia, industry, public service, and other professions. Selection is based on military experience or experience with women-related workforce issues. Members are selected for four-year terms and perform various duties, including visiting military installations annually, conducting a review and evaluation of current research on military women, and developing an annual report with recommendations for the Secretary of Defense.

The Honorable Shawn G. Skelly, performing the duties of deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, provided remarks during the swearing-in ceremony and pinned the new members. The newly appointed committee members include:

  • Retired Major General Peggy C. Combs, U.S. Army
  • Retired Major General Mari K. Eder, U.S. Army
  • Dr. Kyleanne M. Hunter, U.S. Marine Corps Veteran
  • Retired Sergeant Major Angela M. Maness, U.S. Marine Corps
  • Retired Lieutenant General Mark C. Schwartz, U.S. Army
  • Retired Captain David G. Smith, PhD, U.S. Navy
  • Retired Commander Patricia J. Tutalo, U.S. Coast Guard
  • Dr. Elizabeth Van Winkle, former Executive Director, Office of Force Resiliency

Established in 1951, DACOWITS is one of the oldest Department of Defense Federal Advisory Committees. The committee provides the Secretary of Defense with advice and recommendations on matters and policies relating to the recruitment, retention, employment, integration, well-being, and treatment of women in the Armed Forces. 

To learn more about DACOWITS, visit