Sheila E. Widnall

Ranked #92 on the list Best Military Person of All Time

Based on 3 votes

About Sheila E. Widnall

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Sheila Marie Evans Widnall (born July 13, 1938) is an American aerospace researcher and Institute Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She served as United States Secretary of the Air Force between 1993 and 1997, making her the first female Secretary of the Air Force and first woman to lead an entire branch of the U.S. military in the Department of Defense. Widnall graduated from MIT with an S.B. in 1960, S.M. in 1961, and Sc.D. in 1964, all in Aeronautics. She was appointed as the Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics in 1986 and joined the Engineering Systems Division, was Chair of the Faculty 1979–1981, and has served as MIT's Associate Provost from 1992–1993. In 1988 she was the President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. President of the United States Bill Clinton announced her nomination to be Secretary of the Air Force on the Fourth of July, 1993. The Senate received her nomination July 22, 1993, and confirmed her two weeks later on August 5, 1993, 183 days after inauguration and 197 after the office became vacant. During her tenure she handled the Kelly Flinn scandal. She was elected to the National

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