IRELAND'S FIRST-EVER female army general has been appointed to a senior position working with the United Nations in New York, USA.
Major General Maureen O'Brien, a Galway city native, first enlisted with Óglaigh na hÉireann in 1981 and has steadily been climbing the ranks since.
In 2011 she became the first woman in the Irish army to be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, and in 2012 became the first woman to command an infantry battalion when she was appointed Officer Commanding 27th Infantry Battalion in Dundalk.
She then became the first female colonel in 2016, then Brigadier General, and in September 2019 became acting force commander after arriving in Golan Heights for a UNDOF peace mission, working to establish relationships with Israel and Syria.
Now, Major General O'Brien has been appointed to a senior position with the United Nations, based in the UN headquarters in New York, The Irish Independent reports.
The new position will see her take up the role of deputy military advisor to the UN Secretary General, António Guterres.
Major General O'Brien has been vocal in her desire to see more women take up roles within the Irish Army and the sector as a whole; women account for just 7pc of personnel in the Irish Defence Forces.
Last year, a Donegal woman became Ireland's first-ever female navy diver, making history and shattering glass ceilings as she passed the gruelling training and clinched the role.
29-year-old Tahlia Britton, an NUI Galway graduate who was serving as a Gunnery Officer for the Irish navy, graduated from the exhausting 11-week diving course in August 2020.
She, along with colleagues Emmet O'Hanlon and Rob Mulqueen, were the only ones of ten hopefuls to succeed in the course, which infamously has a 70% drop-out rate.
And in September last year, a Tipperary woman, Roberta O'Brien, became the first woman in history to serve as a Commander in the Irish Navy.