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Porcelain On Steel | Women of West Point's Long Gray Line

McAleer, Donna M.

30 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0984551115 / ISBN 13: 9780984551118
Published by Fortis Publishing, 2010
Used Condition: Acceptable Hardcover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Porcelain On Steel | Women of West Point's ...

Publisher: Fortis Publishing

Publication Date: 2010

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Acceptable

About this title

Synopsis:

Porcelain on Steel is an insider's tour of one of America's most storied institutions and shares with the reader what it takes to succeed in the high-pressure, high-performance, high-testosterone lab that produces leaders for the Army and for our Nation. In an era where the American public is saturated with women selling sexuality, this book highlights those who, blessed with strong character traits, use them to make a positive contribution to society. Leadership is a matter of character; leadership is matter of how to be, not how to do it. Leadership is something that is instilled in you-and great leaders in turn instill the ability in others. The women in Porcelain on Steel exemplify this-for all ages and wisdom for all time. Their qualities and strength of character would lead to success in any era but most importantly, their stories are especially relevant now, in today's times. This is a book for your daughter, your sister, your best friend, and most of all, yourself. *** The women in Porcelain on Steel are genuine role models. America's youth, whether male or female, as well as parents in search of stories of inspiration, courage, loyalty, public service and leadership that set a positive direction for our young people, should read this book. This is a powerful and inspirational portrait of the women who serve-not just our country, but their families, their communities, and their own commitment to a purposeful and meaningful life. These women, like the author Donna McAleer herself, had the courage and strength to attend West Point-the toughest and most elite military school in the nation-and have the heart and soul to be role models for women everywhere. We can find courage in their courage, faith in their faith, and our own best selves in them. West Point is an indispensible institution that has helped sustain our democracy for more than 200 years. About the Author: Donna McAleer graduated from West Point in 1987 and served as an Army Officer. Actively involved in the West Point community, she serves as Class President and is an Admissions Field Representative. Donna was elected to the boards of directors of the West Point Association of Graduates, the West Point Women's Network, and is an advisor to West-Point.org. She is the co-founder of Bugle Notes, an on-line community for West Point graduates and cadets. (www.buglenotes.com). She earned a master's degree from the Darden Graduate School of Business Administration, University of Virginia. An outdoor enthusiast with a particular passion for skiing, Donna lives in Park City, Utah with Ted, her husband, Carlyn Ann, their daughter and Col. (ret) Thayer, their dog. Porcelain on Steel is her first book.

From the Back Cover:

Advance praise for Porcelain on Steel: Women of West Point's Long Gray Line

"Donna McAleer's Porcelain on Steel is a powerful and inspirational portrait of the women who serve--not just our country, but their families, their communities, and their own commitment to a purposeful and meaningful life. These women--like the author herself, had the courage and strength to attend West Point--the toughest and most elite military school in the nation--and serve as role models for women everywhere."

-- Andrea Jung, Chairman and CEO, Avon Products, Inc.

* * *

"In a world where change and challenge is certain, character matters. The women of West Point have proven that they have the right stuff in terms of character to handle both change and challenge with courage, resilience, and grace. They have reached the pinnacles of leadership and faced the depths of pain and loss, both in their journey through the hallowed halls of West Point and on the distant fields of battle. They have been forged into strong, inspiring and worthy leaders. Donna McAleer's Porcelain on Steel is an intimate, evocative and candid portrait of the women who serve--not just our country, but their families, and their communities. They have proven to a global audience, women can do anything."

-- Coach Mike Krzyzewski, Duke Men's Basketball

* * *

"The history of women on the hallowed grounds of West Point for the past 30 years has largely been overlooked. Porcelain on Steel by Donna McAleer begins to change that, and brings alive the quality, character and contributions of women of courage, integrity and honor. These women are the type of inspiring models that our young people deserve and require. This is a great book about some of the women who helped make our West Point Military Academy, "Best College and Business School in the Country" (Forbes, August, 2009). If you are a teacher, a mentor, a parent or young adult looking for stories of ordinary people that have done extraordinary things with their life--then you must read this book!"

-- Frances Hesselbein, President & CEO, Leader to Leader Institute, and former CEO of the Girl Scouts of the USA

* * *

"The admission of women to West Point in 1976 strengthened the Army and enabled the institution to better reflect the composition of the society it defends. Porcelain on Steel tells the compelling and inspiring stories of several of these brave women. The record of women who graduated from West Point is superb, and they have served with distinction on our nation's battlefields and across a myriad of milieus. Indeed, in every conflict over the past 30 years, the women of West Point have demonstrated the exceptional traits our nation expects of a West Pointer--selfless service, courage under fire, and commitment to country and duty. These admirable traits come to life in the riveting pages of Porcelain on Steel."

-- General Barry R. McCaffrey

* * *

"For more than 200 years, West Point has provided America outstanding leaders of character for both peace and war. Since 1976, women have been included in the West Point experience, and yet their stories have not been told. In this book, Donna McAleer fires the first shot. She captures the lives of fourteen females who graduated from the Academy to become leaders and outstanding women--women who fight America's battles and women who fight their own personal battles. It's about time their stories have been told."

-- Lieutenant General William J. Lennox, Jr., Superintendent, West Point 2001-2006

* * *

"Porcelain on Steel is an important and compelling book whose value goes far beyond the author's stated purpose. Ms. McAleer gives us portraits of fourteen women West Point graduates: their accomplishments, ordeals and sacrifices. She offers these remarkable stories as role models for young women. In truth, they are far more than that. They are role models for all young people and fellow citizens who exemplify the virtues needed in the perilous age now upon us."

-- Erin Solaro, author, Women in the Line of Fire: What You Should Know About Women in the Military

* * *

"If you have young daughters and are dismayed by the female role models put forward by today's media, Donna McAleer's Porcelain on Steel is the book for you. Subtitled "Women of West Point's Long Gray Line," Ms. McAleer's crisply-written, loaded-with-details work narrates the career and life stories of fourteen West Point grads who have redefined what it means to be a woman in today's world. Ms. McAleer's tale follows its heroes from the initial shock and harassment of "Beast Barracks," through four years in the Corps of Cadets and beyond. From Maj. Lissa Young, who became a crack helicopter pilot and wound up commanding a company of 300 soldiers and 18 Chinook choppers, to Capt. Dawn Halfaker, who lost an arm to an insurgent RPG in Baqubah, Iraq but went on to found and run her own company in support of the war on terrorism, the women profiled in Porcelain on Steel have blazed the trail that will be followed by thousands in the years to come. Men have no monopoly on courage, honor and the passion to serve. Thank you, Donna McAleer, for shining a light on these women who have lived out and been true to, often in the face of bitter and small-minded opposition, their own highest selves."

-- Steven Pressfield, author of Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae and The Afghan Campaign: A Novel

* * *

"Women are making absolutely essential contributions to our ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Porcelain on Steel tells the story of how many of them made their way from West Point to the battlefield, and will inspire their sisters and brothers to make the same thoughtful choice to serve our nation."

-- Dr. John A. Nagl, President, Center for a New American Security, and author of Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons from Malaya and Vietnam

* * *

"Porcelain on Steel, so apt a title for this book, takes us into the hallowed halls of West Point and shows, through a series of personal narratives, the remarkable impact women cadets have had on this `man's world' military institution in just three decades. Women cadets at West Point, from those who broke gender barriers as members of that first Class of `80 to those standing in the Long Gray Line today, have exceptional stories. The fine sampling of these stories contained in this highly recommended book carry the reader through their experiences in various classes. While each story is unique, common threads are present which link these women together as courageous pioneers and leaders. Their tolerance for adversity is profound, as is their whole-hearted dedication to the West Point ethos of Duty, Honor and Country, and service to the Nation."

-- Brigadier General Evelyn "Pat" Foote, President Emeritus, The Alliance for National Defense.

* * *

"Good steel comes from a hot fire. In Porcelain on Steel, Donna McAleer has gathered the stories of an impressive array of women who have graduated from West Point and served as leaders in our nation's Army. All of the women in this collection have combined West Point's creed of Duty, Honor, Country, with their personal attributes of courage, perseverance, and vision, to achieve great success in their service to our country in uniform and beyond. From the beginning, the West Point experience is one of accepting and discharging responsibility--personal responsibility as well as the overarching responsibility that is woven into leading soldiers. Women entered West Point thirty-four years ago, and their skills and experience are now reaching into the upper ranks of our nation's senior leadership. These women, who share the common bond of West Point and have been molded by their service in the Army, share their moments of challenge and achievement in a unique book that is written by one who has been there, done that. This is an important contribution to the history of women in our nation's military leadership and beyond."

-- Major General Joseph P. Franklin, Commandant of Cadets, West Point 1979-1982 and author of Building Leaders the West Point Way: Ten Principles from the Nation's Most Powerful Leadership Lab

* * *

"I have not had the privilege of meeting all of the women profiled in Donna McAleer's remarkable book, Porcelain on Steel, but I know their kind well. From high-ranking commanders to competitive athletes, from business leaders to stay at home moms, I've seen these women in action. They are uniformly tough, smart, resilient, courageous, honorable, and effective. This skillfully crafted collection of biographies of female West Pointers eloquently describes the triumphs and trials of some of our nation's most extraordinary women. These women are genuine role models, and this book is an inspiring read for men and women of all ages."

-- David H. McCormick, Undersecretary of the Treasury, 2007-2009

* * *

"Porcelain on Steel: Women of West Point's Long Gray Line is a compelling and inspiring book, featuring remarkable leaders who drew upon their West Point experience to triumph over formidable professional, medical, and personal challenges and make a real difference in the public, private, and philanthropic sectors. A great read for anyone motivated by leadership, loyalty, courage and public service."

-- Celina B. Realuyo, Assistant Professor, National Defense University

* * *

"A fascinating look at fourteen women of the Long Gray Line--ordinary people with extraordinary stories that span the breadth of the American experience. Their life stories will inspire and captivate--highly recommended for all who want to understand the journey of American women at West Point and beyond."

-- Colonel Peter Mansoor, author of Baghdad at Sunrise: A Brigade Commander's War in Iraq and the General Raymond E. Mason, Jr. Chair of Military History, The Ohio State University

* * *

"Donna McAleer's collection of stories of leadership and service is an important contribution to the history of West Point's Long Gray Line. What these women have accomplished--what these officers and soldiers have accomplished--makes for an inspiring reminder of the best that our nation has to offer. Porcelain on Steel is an uplifting and important book."

-- Bill Murphy Jr., author of The Intelligent Entrepreneur: How 3 Harvard Business School Graduates Learned the 10 Rules of Successful Entrepreneurship and In a Time of War: the Proud & Perilous Journey of West Point's Class of 2002.

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