Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly presided Wednesday over the NYPD’s Women’s History Month commemoration inside Police Headquarters, at which female officers who also serve in the U.S. armed forces were honored.
Commissioner Kelly was joined by President of the Policewomen’s Endowment Association, NYPD Sergeant Karen Pisano. News anchor Rosanna Scotto served as Master of Ceremonies, and U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Linda Fagan was the keynote speaker.
“I’m very proud of how far we’ve come as a country, from the days when women serving was a rarity. There are more women in the NYPD than any other police department in the country – but your value is not merely in your numbers. It’s in your unwavering commitment to our mission and the public’s safety,” Commissioner Kelly said. “The accomplishments we celebrate tonight are a terrific tribute to women’s history and to women in the military.”
Forty years ago, there were fewer than 700 women in the uniformed ranks of the NYPD; today, there are nearly 6,000, of whom more than 600 are detectives, 750 sergeants, 170 lieutenants, and approximately 50 women in the rank of captain and above.
At Wednesday’s ceremony, Police Officer Carolyn Anderson was honored as the Department’s highest-ranking female military officer. Officer Anderson is a Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Naval Reserve who has served the NYPD since 2005. Also recognized were NYPD Sergeant Tara Dawe, a 14-year veteran of the Department and Captain in the U.S. Army Reserve who served in Bosnia and twice in Iraq, most recently as commander of a military police company in support of Operation Enduring Freedom; and Police Officer Morna Davis, a first Lieutenant in the U.S. Army National Guard who also served in Iraq. Officer Davis is a 15-year veteran of the NYPD.
Sergeant Pisano, President of the Policewoman’s Endowment Association, said: “There can be no higher calling, no more important sacrifice or service, than the one these women of the NYPD have chosen to make. We can all see the surface similarities, the uniforms, the rank structure, but at its core, what the Coast Guard, Navy, Army, Air Force and Marines share with police officers, is their willingness to serve, and to sacrifice. I would like to thank Commissioner Kelly and the Executive Staff for their steadfast support of the Policewomen’s Endowment Association.”