Tammy Smith promoted to brigadier general

Tammy Smith promoted to brigadier general, making her the first openly gay flag officer

Tammy Smith promoted to brigadier general
11 August 2012

Tammy Smith was promoted yesterday (10 July) to brigadier general. As reported by the publication Stars and Stripes, Smith is the first general officer to come out while serving.

‘It is indeed a new era in America’s military when our most accomplished leaders are able to recognize who they are and serve the country they love at the same time,’ noted Servicemembers Legal Defense Network’s executive director Aubrey Sarvis. ‘Brigadier General Smith made history today – not only as an exemplary service member who renders outstanding service to our nation with integrity and honor – but as a proud lesbian acknowledging the tremendous sacrifice her family makes in order for her to serve and advance.’

The private ceremony for the 49 year old was held at the Women in Military Service for America Memorial, at Arlington National Cemetery located in the southern state of Virginia. Smith’s wife, Tracey Hepner, was part of the official party and participated in the pining ceremony. Hepner is a co-founder of the Military Partners and Families Coalition, an organization focused on benefits and military programs for same-sex partners.

‘I am just so pleased that my family could participate in this ceremony today,’ Smith said as reported by OutServe magazine.

‘For years, gay and lesbian generals and admirals were forced to hide their families in order to protect their careers,’said Sue Fulton, a 1980 West Point graduate and member of the OutServe board of directors. ‘It is a great day for our military and for our nation when this courageous leader is finally able to recognize her wife for her support and sacrifice in the same way that all military families should be recognized for their service to our country.’

Gen Smith is now the deputy chief of staff for the Army Reserve. Her job duties include pay and benefits and support for for Army Reserve families.



No thumbnail available

Angry Birds celebrating Freddie Mercury today

Freddie Mercury has been transformed into an Angry Bird as part of this year’s Freddie for a Day campaign in support of the Mercury Phoenix Trust
No thumbnail available

Washington governor to sign gay marriage into law on Monday

Christine Gregoire will also lobby New Jersey governor to do the same
No thumbnail available

Gay parenting: How to talk to young children about adoption

Thinking about adoption? Children will always have questions about being adopted, and knowing how to respond with honest answers is essential. We asked Beth Friedberg of New York’s Modern Family Center for advice
No thumbnail available

‘I want Prince Harry to be my new boyfriend,’ says Strictly judge

Craig Revel Horwood wants the cheeky prince to take part in Strictly Come Dancing
No thumbnail available

Uganda tourism board: gays are welcome

Officials are surprised by the backlash to the country's now-overturned anti-gay law
No thumbnail available

Anderson Cooper reacts to outpouring of support since coming out publicly

CNN anchor says he 'appreciates all the nice tweets'
No thumbnail available

Funnyman Alec Mapa shares very serious reasons behind his drive to tell his gay story

Seeing AIDS Quilt unfurled in Washington DC 27 years ago made him realize the world did not know the stories of those who died
No thumbnail available

Two gay high school athletes attend prom together in West Virginia without incident

Michael Martin and Logan Westrope slow danced to Sam Smith's Stay With Me during charmed evening
No thumbnail available

Driving a Mini Cooper on ice

Gay Star Travel editor Jean Paul Zapata got a crash course on how to drive a car on a frozen lake in Sweden
No thumbnail available

A US judge places the North Dakota same-sex marriage case on hold

In 2014 June, seven same-sex couples challenged the state's ban and its refusal to honor gay marriages from other states