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About Our Founders

Jeannette and Kyleanne are both Marine Corps Cobra pilots and combat veterans with PhDs in International Relations/International Security.

While they only briefly served in the same unit, they have worked together in various capacities for over two decades: they raced against each other as undergraduates at the U.S. Naval Academy and Georgetown University, met again in the training squadron when Kyleanne was an AH-1W student and Jeannette was an instructor, and reconnected later in their careers – after Kyleanne finished a tour as a Congressional Fellow on Capitol Hill – in the fight to integrate all job specialties and units in the Marine Corps.

Upon reconnecting, Kyleanne and Jeannette realized that they were both completing advanced degrees while studying security through a gender lens. While researching and writing about the gender dimensions of security, particularly warfighting, they realized that discussions of gender, the Women, Peace, and Security Agenda, and military measures of diversity and inclusion were often divorced from discussions about national security outcomes. They seek to change that through the Athena Leadership Project.