Schulte Is the First Woman to Receive the Award
WASHINGTON, Jan. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Air Force 1st Lt. Roslyn L. Schulte was posthumously awarded the National Intelligence Medal for Valor today for her courageous efforts to teach Afghan military officials how to gather and interpret military intelligence. She died last May in Afghanistan when an improvised explosive device struck her vehicle en route to a Bagram Airfield meeting on the very issue that powers the IC: sharing intelligence.
Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair made the announcement at a quarterly National Intelligence Community Awards Ceremony, where he also recognized 42 other teams and individuals for outstanding accomplishments in the IC. Schulte is the first woman to receive the Medal for Valor, a tribute to heroism in connection with an IC contribution to national security. Among IC awards, the Medal for Valor is second only to the Intelligence Cross. Schulte's parents, Robert and Susie, and her brother, Todd, attended the event on her behalf.
In only three months of duty in Afghanistan, she "made a far-reaching impact on how intelligence was taught and shared with the Afghan National Army," said Blair, speaking from the headquarters of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Schulte, he added, was "wise beyond her 25 years, and respected as a leader by all those around her – from general to airman to Afghan tribal leader – regardless of the branch of service, regardless of nationality."
A 2006 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, she was an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations officer assigned to the 613th Air and Space Operations Center at Hickam Air Force Base in Hawaii. She was deployed to Afghanistan in February 2009, serving the Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan.
In addition to her teaching duties, Schulte was the command's foreign disclosure officer, working to enhance information sharing with Afghan forces. She was often required to travel outside of her main base at Camp Eggers in Kabul, Afghanistan, to more remote parts of the region. She accepted the known risks of traveling across dangerous terrain, intensely focused on the goal of helping the Afghan military to achieve self-sufficiency. In fact, she was the main conduit for sharing intelligence with Afghan military officials.
"She wanted to be some place where the action was," Robert Schulte said in an interview after the event.
Originally from the St. Louis, Mo., area, she was the first female graduate of the academy to be killed by an enemy combatant.
Anthony Pascuma, chief of foreign disclosure for the U.S. Central Command, nominated her for the medal. "She was very vibrant, happy, gung-ho, mission-focused," he said in a telephone interview from his Tampa, Fla., office. "She was 150 percent committed to the mission...and wanted to do her part to support operations and combat the war on terrorism."
She was also concerned about the Afghan people. Schulte spent three hours nearly every day organizing a charity for Afghan refugees. At Camp Pawan, a U.S. training facility in Afghanistan, a building has been named the Schulte School and Clinic in her honor.
The ODNI established the Medal for Valor in 2008 to acknowledge the extraordinary and mostly unsung accomplishments of Intelligence Community professionals.
The ODNI oversees 16 federal organizations that make up the U.S. Intelligence Community.
Video and photos from this event are available online at www.dni.gov.
SOURCE Office of the Director of National Intelligence