By: Kit Norton for VTDigger, Feb. 5, 2019
Retired Col. Rosanne Greco formally announced her candidacy to become Vermont’s next adjutant general Tuesday morning in a brief press conference in which she promised reform of the organization and continued opposition to its next major mission.
Greco’s candidacy — reported Friday by VTDigger — means a woman will now be part of a race in which some lawmakers have emphasized the need to change a culture where women have been routinely undervalued, harassed and in some cases abused.
“In order to change the culture, you need somebody from outside the culture,” said Ben Cohen, the Ben & Jerry’s co-founder who along with Greco has been a leading critic of plans to base F-35 fighter jets on Vermont’s military base just outside Burlington.
“I’ve worked with Col. Rosanne Greco, and I can assure you that I have never worked with anybody who is more hard working, more dedicated, more ethical, or with more attention to detail than Col. Rosanne Greco,” Cohen added.
Greco, a high-profile retired female Air Force colonel best known for fighting against the deployment of the F-35, said she is running for the top Guard position because of her concern for how women in the Guard are treated, her concern that nuclear arms will be stored at Burlington International Airport, and to correct the power imbalance between the Army and Air Guard units.
Greco praised VTDigger for publishing a series of articles uncovering a “good old boys” culture that often sexualizes women and trivializes misconduct. She said reading the stories of the women who came forward made her decide to run for adjutant general.