CLAY NATIONAL GUARD CENTER — History was made in the Georgia National Guard on Nov. 7 when Brig. Gen. Maria L. Britt, was promoted to the rank of major general at a ceremony at Fort McPherson near Atlanta. Britt received her second star in the company of more than 200 family, friends and colleagues.
Britt, the commanding general of Georgia’s Army National Guard, is the only woman to hold the rank of major general in the 360-year history of the Georgia National Guard. She also serves as assistant adjutant general for the Georgia Department of Defense.
Selected as commanding general for the Georgia Army National Guard in 2007, she has the responsibility for manning, training and equipping the 11,200 soldiers of the Georgia Army Guard.
“I look forward to continuing my vision of creating readiness and posturing our organization to support any Homeland Defense mission while continuing to support the war fight in this era of persistent conflict,” Britt said.
Britt’s pinning is another “first” among the many that mark her distinguished military career since graduating from West Point 27 years ago. Earlier in her career, she was the first female battalion commander in the Georgia Army National Guard and the first woman to hold the position of Georgia Army Guard Commander. She is one of only three female major generals currently serving in the Army National Guard of the United States.
“I realize that I am a female leader in a predominately male organization, but I prefer to focus on the fact that I am a leader and a soldier first,” she said. “I will strive to be the best leader that I can be and to prepare our soldiers and organization to accomplish our mission.”
According to Maj. Gen. William T. Nesbitt, Georgia’s adjutant general, Britt’s promotion comes as a reflection of an officer who “seeks out the hard jobs, and does them extremely well.”
“In these times of high operational tempo for our organization,” Nesbitt said, “she is the right leader, at the right time to command the largest component of the Georgia Department of Defense.”
“Georgia is a very patriotic state with kids that are motivated to serve their country,” Britt said, “so it’s my role to continue growing our force structure, creating readiness and positioning the Georgia Army Guard for future success.”