Published On: March 8th, 2021|528 words|1.9 min read|
This week’s Borne the Battle features Air Force Veteran Graciela Tiscareno-Sato, who discusses her efforts in overcoming the adversity of a stereotypical workforce, and breaking barriers while transitioning to become the founder of a niche publishing, marketing and communications firm. She is also the author of bilingual children and entrepreneurship books.
Tiscareno-Sato joined the Air Force on the advice of her high school counselor’s husband to apply for a ROTC Scholarship. After school, she completed Undergraduate Navigator Training at Mather Air Force Base (AFB) in Sacramento and then graduated near the top of her class – as the only woman in the class. She then trained in the KC-135R refueling tanker at Castle AFB in California before reporting to the 43rd Air Refueling Squadron at Fairchild AFB in Spokane, Washington.
On her first deployment was to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, she was a member of one of the first few aircrews to patrol and enforce the Southern NO FLY Zone in Southern Iraq after the conclusion of Operation Desert Storm. She and her crew earned the air medal. This happened 10 months before Congress lifted the Combat Exclusion Law that barred women from being assigned to combat duties.
In the podcast, Tisacareno-Sato tells the story of how this Air Medal almost didn’t happen for her crew because of this technicality.
During her military career, she visited four continents and flew for thousands of hours. As an instructor, she taught GPS and navigation systems. She also learned how to work in a cross-cultural environment, which set her up for a future in global marketing.
After her service, Tiscareno-Sato pursued and secured a position at Siemens as a global marketer. She is also the author of an Amazon bestselling bilingual children’s book, Good Night Captain Mama/Buenas Noches Capitán Mamá, the first bilingual children’s book about why mommies serve in the military.