August 27, 2020

Lieutenant Colonel Mona Johnson dreamed of a world where a Muslim woman could be treated as an equal. After escaping a politically divided Egypt, she and her family lived in exile in Saudi Arabia before immigrating to the US in 1960. But assimilating into American culture was far from easy, as she and her family experienced unending discrimination compelling them to change their name in order to blend in with society. Defying years of prejudice and gender inequality, Johnson became most likely the first immigrant Arab-Muslim woman to serve in the US Armed Forces and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel.

Not Created Equal: An Immigrant Muslim Woman’s Pursuit of Equality in her Family, the Army and America