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U.S. President Joe Biden nominated Lieutenant General Laura Richardson to head the Southern Command and General Jacqueline Van Ovost to lead the Transportation Command during an International Women’s Day event.
If confirmed by the Senate, Richardson would become the first woman to head that unit in charge of military operations in Latin America and the Caribbean. The current three-star lieutenant general would earn a fourth star, and would go on to lead the more than 1,200 military and civilian personnel that make up the Southern Command based in Doral, Florida.
Richardson currently serves as the commanding general of Army Joint Task Force North, a base located in Texas.
“It’s hard to become something you can’t see,” Biden said during the event, stressing the importance of more women reaching leadership positions within the military.
Southern Command has been led since 2018 by Admiral Craig Faller. In recent years, it has increased its military presence along the coasts of Latin America to fight drug trafficking.