State Police Marks 50 Years Since First Female Troopers

Hershey, PA – Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) celebrated 50 years of women in its ranks today by honoring the trailblazers who broke through its all-male barrier and made history as the first female state troopers.

Fourteen women graduated from the Pennsylvania State Police Academy with the 31st Cadet Class, the first to admit female cadets, July 7, 1972. Surviving members of the group were invited to a ceremony in their honor at the academy in Hershey.

"These women were motivated to enlist by a sense of duty and a genuine interest in police work," said Colonel Robert Evanchick, Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police. "We owe them a debt of gratitude for their roles in breaking barriers and blazing trails that have helped make this Department what it is today." 

PSP was the nation's first state police agency to fully integrate female troopers into the regular command structure. Thus, the women of the 31st Cadet Class took on jobs exclusive to men throughout the department's 67-year history, setting a high bar for female troopers who followed in their footsteps.

Kathryn (Hosmer) Doutt became the first woman in the department's history to head a bureau when, in 1995, she was promoted to major and assigned to serve as director of the Bureau of Patrol. Five years earlier, Doutt became PSP's first female troop commander when she was assigned to head Troop K, Philadelphia.

Lucinda Hammond (Hawkins) in 1989 became the first female trooper to receive the Pennsylvania State Police Commendation Medal, one of the department's highest awards. Hammond and another trooper risked their lives after a fiery tractor-trailer crash near Harrisburg, pulling a trapped occupant out of the truck just before it exploded.

The other women of the 31st Cadet Class are Regina Adams, Jill Bairhalter, Romaine Engle, Judith Galloway, Nancy Lightner, Judith McCarr, Ann Metcalf, Patricia Moe, Kathryn Neville, Mary Connie Rossetti, Doris Sott, and Barbara Wharrey.

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Media Contacts

Adam Reed

State Police Media

Myles Snyder

State Police Media