The Honorable Christine E. Wormuth, Ms. Lisa Atherton Honored as NDIA’s ‘Women In Defense’ Service to the Flag Awardees


Recognized for Extraordinary Leadership and Strategic Impact in Defense


ARLINGTON, VA - Women In Defense (WID), an affiliate of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA), presented its Service to the Flag Award to The Honorable Christine E. Wormuth, who recently retired as Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, and Ms. Lisa Atherton, Executive Vice President, Military Business of Bell Helicopter on Wednesday.


“This is very meaningful to me,” said Wormuth. “Years ago, when I started working at the Pentagon there were relatively few women. Now we’re seeing women in the highest levels of government and I’m tremendously pleased to see additional talent, expertise and perspectives coming together to work on very difficult problems. I thank Women In Defense for recognizing me and for the very important work you are doing for women.”


“While at the Air Force Academy I had to prove to those who didn’t believe in me I deserved to be there, which drove me to persevere,” said Atherton. “I know every day makes a difference to the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and that we have to work to make sure they have what they need to do their jobs. I’ve had an incredible support system and I’m eternally grateful for organizations that encourage women to become leaders and inspire others.”


“Secretary Wormuth and Ms. Atherton are two of our strongest, most successful women in defense, and serve as role models for women and girls who aspire to serve in national security,” said René Bardorf, NDIA Chief Communications Officer and Director of Women In Defense. “We are pleased to honor both of these women for their tremendous contributions to our nation.”


Notables in attendance at the ceremony, held at the Women In Military Service For America Memorial yesterday, include: Director of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency LTG Michael Linnington, USA (Ret.); The Honorable David Shear, Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy; Special Assistant to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense for Protocol Adrienne Schweer; Special Assistant to the Secretary of Defense Hila Hanif; Corporate Vice President of Government Relations at Northrop Grumman and NDIA Board Chair Sid Ashworth; and Amy Courter, the National President of Women In Defense and COO of Dynamic Computer Corporation.


The Service to the Flag Award honors women who have contributed extraordinary leadership and strategic impact in government service and the defense industry.  The Service to the Flag Award is bestowed annually through NDIA’s “Women In Defense” organization and recognizes leaders who identify and address some of our nation’s most vexing national security challenges through their work in and outside of government. 


Women In Defense is a national organization with 20 chapters throughout the United States. As part of NDIA, the nation’s largest and eldest defense association, it convenes the most thoughtful and innovative leaders to advance and advocate for the strength and security of our nation, its allies and partners.