Already a trailblazer, Army Captain Kristen Griest became the Army’s first female infantry officer when, on Monday, the Army approved her request to transfer from the military police unit she had been serving in.
Griest became well-known last year after she became one of the first three women to successfully complete the Army's elite Ranger School course.
“Like any other officer, male or female, that wants to transfer their branch, she took the opportunity and applied for an exception to the Army policy to transfer her branch from Military Police to Infantry,” said Bob Purtiman, a spokesman at Fort Benning, Georgia. Purtiman confirmed to ABC News that Griest's transfer request was approved by the Army on Monday and she became immediately eligible to serve in an Army infantry unit.
After successfully completing Ranger School last year, Griest returned to service at her home base at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. The participation of women in the Ranger School course was part of the Army's research into whether women should be integrated into combat units. The other military services also conducted similar programs that were presented to Defense Secretary Ash Carter last fall.
In December, Carter ordered the military services to open up all combat specialties and branches to women, and since then, they have been implementing plans to do so.