General Dana Lindsley Born ’85
Leading the Way to Greatness

By Donna Parker

Brigadier General Dana Lindsley Born ’85 certainly married into the right name. She was born to be a leader. Even in her “spare time,” this dean of faculty at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo., is in training. Her current read, “Becoming a Strategic Leader,” was written by her academic advisor at the Creative Leadership Institute.

She keeps an extremely tight schedule and is gone from home quite often, but when she returns, she’s always excited to see her children, whom she calls “two wonderful blessings.” While Mom’s away, husband Tim commands the troops – 4-year-old Heather and Hanna, who is “6 and ¾.” Tim is a retired U.S. Marine Corps officer and now a stay-at-home dad who home schools the children.

“I believe in service to our country and helping to develop the next generation of military officers. My husband and I hope our two role models will be helpful to the girls – even if they do attend their dance recitals in camouflage shorts and high-top sneakers, instead of pink tutus. Tim keeps stability in the kids’ life!”

She has 4,000 other kids – the Academy cadets for whom she oversees instruction. The general also directs 500 faculty members and manages $250 million in resources. Nominated by President Bush, she is the first woman to hold this position and defines this success like any other, “It’s watching those around you succeed.”

This distinguished officer holds a master’s degree in experimental psychology from Trinity and a doctoral degree from Pennsylvania State University, but when asked what she’s most proud of, she quickly responds, “My two wonderful children and being married to my best friend.”

When asked the question, “Who is your own personal hero,” Dana hesitates, remarking on the irony of this question that she asks people “all the time.” Finally, this highly-decorated leader and academic scholar delivers a poignant answer, “My mom, because when I was younger, she noticed in me a confidence issue and helped fully develop the things I could do.”