Sharon Nesmith, the Deputy Chief of the British Army’s General Staff, said she has had to work hard to feel included after encountering sexism as she climbed the ranks. The Lieutenant General took up her prestigious role in August and became the first woman officer to hold the position. During her 30 years career in the army, the 52-year-old has held many crucial roles and served in Germany, the Balkans and Iraq.
The Lieutenant General has marked several record-breaking achievements, as she was the first female soldier to command a brigade and the first female brigadier.
Moreover, she was the first woman to be made a two-star general, and then also a three-star general.
She told the Times of her experiences in the military: “It’s a very different army to the army I joined.
“The expectations I had 30 years ago are very different from the expectations that rightly women joining the forces have today.
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“That’s what we see playing out. We are absolutely determined to find the pockets and to make an example of why that is absolutely not acceptable.”
The Lieutenant General also spoke on the need for funding in order for the military operations to be optimised and incorporate the latest technology.
She commented on the prospect of the Government reducing the defence budget saying: “It’s not for me to speculate on what should be the right outcome from a spending review.
“What I do know is we need to make sure we’re learning the lessons and we’re acting upon the lessons.”