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Women veterans in Wisconsin are leading the way for the next generation

A New Berlin native was named Wisconsin Woman Veteran of the Year for 2022.
Posted at 6:08 PM, Nov 11, 2022

Patriotic music welcomed veterans to Milwaukee's War Memorial Center to honor their service and remember friends they lost.

The ceremony featured local speakers, a wreath laying, a rifle salute, and taps.

“To me, it’s a big family reunion,” said Tiffany Koehler, an Army veteran from Milwaukee. “We call each other brothers and sisters.”

Koehler was one of the only female veterans at the event.

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Army veteran from Milwaukee, Tiffany Koehler, helped bring the “I am not invisible” campaign to Wisconsin to raise awareness and support for women who served.

“It’s not like we’re new to serving,” she said. “We’re just becoming more visible.”

Koehler helped bring the “I am not invisible” campaign to Wisconsin to raise awareness and support for women who served.

“I wanted to serve the greater good, something higher than myself,” Koehler said. “I wanted to do something special.”

About 10 percent of U.S. veterans are women, but that number is rising as women are also the fastest-growing subpopulation of the military.

Natalie Isensee, from New Berlin, felt a similar calling. As a Marine, she served in Kuwait and Iraq. Now she works to help veterans as a volunteer with Team Red, White & Blue.

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Natalie Isensee from New Berlin served in Kuwait and Iraq as a Marine. Now she works to help veterans as a volunteer with Team Red, White & Blue.

“The organization promotes overall physical and mental wellness for veterans,” Isensee said. “We get together for hikes, runs, yoga, breakfast, coffee. It’s building connections, so veterans have that support system, someone to call or text if they’re having a bad day. It’s difficult to ask for help, especially veterans because all our training tells us to help somebody else.”

Isensee’s dedication earned her the title “Wisconsin Woman Veteran of the Year” for 2022.

“It’s quite the honor,” she said.

But her work doesn’t stop there. Isensee is helping create the non-profit “Vets Can” - Veterans Community Action Network.

“We’re trying to connect all these organizations supporting veterans in a variety of ways to share resources and information and referrals in one place,” Isensee said.

Women who served our country, and now strengthen our community.

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