Last week, Women Veterans’ Network held its 7th Annual “Women Are Veterans Too!” event at the State House. We celebrated women’s service in the military and named Lieutenant Colonel Andrea Gayle-Bennett “Outstanding Woman Veteran of the Year. A resident of Lynn, LTC Gayle-Bennett is a Pediatric Physician Assistant and a member of the United States Army National Guard. Every year, the Department presents the Outstanding Woman Veteran Award to a Massachusetts resident whose military and community service is extraordinary.
Established in 1997, Women Veterans' Network is the central resource for Massachusetts’ 28,000 women veterans. The Network provides women veterans with information about federal, state and local benefits. The group also raises awareness of their unique needs and works to identify health and human resources to meet those needs.
Lieutenant Colonel Gayle-Bennett has been an officer in the U.S. Army National Guard for more than 20 years and has completed several active duty tours. During her employment to Iraq, she worked as a Physician Assistant providing medical care for soldiers. She currently serves as the Deputy Commander of Medical Command for the Army National Guard and is now the most senior ranking African-American woman in the Massachusetts National Guard. LTC Gayle-Bennett is also a pediatric Physician Assistant with the Harvard Vanguard Medical Group.
In 2010, LTC Gayle-Bennett led the Massachusetts National Guard Command Resiliency Team in organizational support for soldiers at mobilization and demobilization sites. She also facilitated the identification of wounded soldiers and served as an advocate for them during the wounded warrior process. The daughter of Jamaican immigrants, LTC Gayle-Bennett is also a wife and mother of five children. Congratulations, LTC Gayle-Bennett, and thank you for your service.