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    Woman of Substance: Betty Doyle

    04/15/2018 5:03 PM | Rhiannon Collins (Administrator)

    Woman of Substance

    A woman of substance is a woman of power, a woman of positive influence and a woman of meaning. To be branded a woman of substance is one of the greatest compliments one can give a woman.  You don’t have to be famous to be considered a woman of substance, you just need to create your own unique presence.

    We honor the life and times of Betty Doyle


    The photo (circa 1975) is Betty Doyle receiving an award from the Director of Personnel, Norm Perlberg, for her work at the Defense Intelligence Agency where she was the coordinator of the Federal Women’s Program. 

    Elizabeth Mahan Doyle died April 5, 2018 at the age of 95.  She was an Electronics Engineer/Intelligence Analyst and a strong proponent for women in the engineering field long before STEM was an "industry."

    She served as a Physicist in the Bureau of Ships, Navy Department from 1944 to 1948, where she became an Electronics Engineer.  Her assignments included tours of duty in the Direction Finder Design Section, the Infrared and Ultraviolet Passive Detection Systems Design Branch and the Radar Design Branch.  In 1956 she transferred to the Central Intelligence Agency, working as an Electronics Analyst in the Headquarters Electronics Intelligence Processing Center where she interpreted signals intercepted by the famous U-2 missions.  While there, Betty Doyle earned a special award from the National Security Agency for her classified reports on the Soviet Surface-to-Air Missile Radar.  This work led to the successful design of electronic countermeasure systems.

    In 1963, Betty Doyle moved to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) where she conducted special studies to identify radar signal collection requirements and to determine how successful the airborne collections missions were in satisfying these requirements for both the Air Force and Navy.  In 1971 she was appointed to be the Federal Women’s Coordinator for DIA in addition to her responsibilities as an Electronic Engineer/Intelligence Analyst. In this capacity she was the ombudsman for all of DIA’s female employees.  If there was a problem she had a stable of generals and admirals that she could work with to address the issue.  Needless to say, this didn’t earn her a spot on some individual’s Valentine’s Day Card Lists.  But she was committed to see that all women in DIA were treated fairly, properly, and with the respect that they deserved as professionals. 

    Betty Doyle was a tremendous role model and a pioneer for women.  We honor her work and the path she carved for women in the STEM fields and the workplace.


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