The Tampa Bay area is privileged to have so many American heroes living in our area.
Since the Seminole Hard Rock Casino Tampa has sponsored the Gasparilla Parade, they have chosen a community hero to lead the pirate invasion.
This year, America’s first female four-star U.S. Army General will be honored as the community hero.
Retired General Ann Dunwoody became the first woman in military history to achieve the rank of four-star general in November of 2008. She led and ran the largest global logistics command in the Army which included 69.000 military and civilians in all 50 states and 140 countries.
General Dunwoody has even written a book, A Higher Standard: Leadership Strategies from America’s First Female Four-Star General.
“You know, there were so many [women] that went before me who opened the doors. Women as far back as history,” said General Dunwoody. “Women dressing up like men to be in the military. So there is a whole line of women who have blazed the trail before I did and allowed me to be successful.”She managed a budget of $60 billion and was responsible for oversight of approximately $70 billion in service contracts. Additionally, she managed and operationalized the Army's global supply chain in support of Iraq and Afghanistan, contingency operations in Haiti, Pakistan, and Japan, while simultaneously moving the Command Headquarters from Fort Belvoir, VA to Huntsville, AL as a result of Base Realignment and Closing (BRAC).
General Dunwoody has over 37 years of service to our country and has overseen multi-billion dollar budgets, commanded tens of thousands of military personnel, and has made a lasting impact with her dedication to service. Her historic distinction of being the first woman in United States Military history to achieve the rank of four-star general is just one of the many accomplishments she has earned in her stellar career.
The 2018 Gasparilla Pirate Fest is scheduled for Saturday, January 27, 2018, and will feature the historic Gasparilla Invasion, the Parade of the Pirates presented by Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla and the Gasparilla Pirate Fest Street Festival presented by Budweiser in downtown, Tampa.