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Doran Appointed R-MA’s First Female Commander

(September 7, 2010) When it comes to female leadership, women at Randolph-Macon Academy in Front Royal, Virginia have held numerous prestigious positions in the Air Force JROTC unit. Several times, they reached the level of vice corps commander (the second highest position within the unit), and twice a young lady was promoted to corps commander in mid-year when the male commander stepped down. But still, earning the title of corps commander from the start of the year eluded the young ladies.

Allyson Doran '11 receives the corps commander sabre from Maj Gen Henry M. Hobgood, president of Randolph-Macon Academy, during the Air Force JROTC cadre leadership promotions.

Until this year.

On August 24, 2010, Allyson Doran became the first female to be named Corps Commander at the start of the year at Randolph-Macon Academy.  In addition, Kalie Plasier was named Vice Corps Commander, giving the young ladies the top two slots in the Air Force JROTC program at R-MA.

“We simply had a large number of great female leaders in this senior class,” commented Lt Col RG McManus, head of the Air Force JROTC department at R-MA. “We knew even at the end of last year that both Kalie and Allyson were the top contenders for the corps commander slot. They both came into cadre camp and did an outstanding job demonstrating their competence as leaders. We’re proud of both of them.”

Randolph-Macon Academy was founded as an all-male college-preparatory school in 1892. Females arrived at the Academy in 1974 as day students, and the National Defense Cadet Corps, which was added in 1918, was changed to an Air Force JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps) unit in 1975.  Since then, the female population at R-MA grew steadily—a female dorm was built in the 1990’s–until it reached an average of 26-28% each year. 

Today, R-MA is a college-preparatory, coeducational day and boarding school for students in grades 6 through 12. Students in grades 9-12 participate in the Air Force JROTC program. R-MA is affiliated with the United Methodist Church and is located in Front Royal, VA.