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Women's History Month: Supply Corps Officer

Navy leaders and pioneers

"From the Revolutionary War to current conflicts, women have played a crucial role in the security of our nation and the success of the U.S. Navy. Join us as we celebrate Women's History Month by profiling women leaders and pioneers across the Navy."

This is a graphic of Rear Admiral Haven.

Rear Admiral Deborah Haven is currently serving as Commander, Defense Contract Management Agency international.

Q: Why did you decide to join/serve the Navy?

A: The Navy Reserve offered me an opportunity to serve our country in the uniformed services on a part-time basis while my children were young. When I went back into civilian federal service I found that my Navy career and civilian career as a military logistician were complimentary and allowed me to be more effective in both environments. As an undergraduate business student at the University of Maryland, I thoroughly enjoyed the transportation management course, now referred to as logistics or supply chain management. Logistics is the key element in supporting the Navy's ability to keep the sea lanes open and project power wherever and whenever it is required. There is no better organization to engage in the profession of logistician than the United States Navy.

Q: Who have your role models of mentors been that have influenced you or helped to guide you?

A: I have served with many, many military professionals and for the most part, they provided guidance and encouragement in every aspect of my professional life. So many leaders pushed me or set me up to excel, challenging me beyond what I thought I was capable of doing. Rear Admirals Patricia Wolf and Sharon Redpath and of course my current boss, General Wendy Masiello were particularly helpful to me both as mentors and as role models.

Q: Please tell us a story about someone, perhaps in your family or otherwise, who has influenced you or challenged you to become more than you ever thought you might.
This is a photo collage of Rear Admiral Haven.

A: My dad, a WW II Air Force pilot and career reservist always encouraged me to participate fully in whatever I had the opportunity to try, whether sports, academics, part time jobs or other outside activities. Dad always had lots of minor (and some major) construction projects going on and all of us kids were required to participate fully in the manual labor necessary to complete the job. My sister and I were expected to work alongside my two brothers and believe me, no distinction was made because of our gender (mixing cement, roofing or changing car oil). My husband was a Naval Officer when we were married. He retired after nearly 30 years of service officer and enlisted, and he was always (and is) very supportive. The Navy has always been a family affair with us as my daughter, son-in-law, father-in-law, brother-in-law, and aunt have all been sailors.

Q: Please tell us which past assignments are the most memorable to you and why.

A: I have had the opportunity to command sailors on several occasions and those command tours will always be the most memorable. Deployments to Kuwait, Panama, Poland, and Gitmo were certainly stressful but rewarding in many ways. And my experience as a Navy wife with my husband during a two year tour in Morocco was certainly memorable for many reasons, not least of which was the birth of our second daughter.

Q: What does being a leader in the Navy mean to you?

A: Being a Naval officer is an opportunity to serve in the world's most powerful naval force while helping to shape that force for the future. Leading American sailors, soldiers, airmen, and Marines as well as civilian federal leaders in the Department of Defense is the greatest job in the world and a privilege I am most honored to perform.