Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (Ind-MP) helped pin the insignia on Esther Camacho Sablan, who had just been promoted to full colonel in the Air National Guard at a family ceremony on Thursday.
Delegate Sablan believes that Col. Sablan is the first Northern Marianas female to achieve this high rank in the U.S. military, which requires congressional approval.
“She is an inspiration to us all, especially to girls and younger women setting their goals in life,” said Sablan in his weekly newsletter, e-kilili.
First commissioned through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Col. Sablan received both her bachelor and master’s degrees in aeronautics and astronautics there.
She has served on multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan as a combat search and rescue helicopter pilot and, along the way, collected two more master’s degrees.
Today, Col. Sablan is at Joint Base Andrews outside Washington, serving as chief of the Force Planning and Strategic Basing Division.
“Congratulations, Col. Sablan. I look forward to seeing you when you are next promoted,” added the delegate. (PR)