A Leesville native became the Louisiana National Guard's first female two star general today.

The Louisiana National Guard’s Brigadier General Joanne F. Sheridan was promoted to the rank of major general during an official ceremony at the Ansel M. Stroud Military History & Weapons Museum at Jackson Barracks in New Orleans.

Sheridan, who has served as the Louisiana National Guard's assistant adjutant general-Army for two years, was “pinned” during the official ceremony and become the new assistant adjutant general.

Originally from Leesville, Sheridan, will serve as a principal adviser to the adjutant general and be responsible for assisting him in the deployment and coordination of programs, policies and plans for the Louisiana Army and Air National Guard.

Sheridan attended Northeast Louisiana University in Monroe, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology. She received her commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps in May 1983, and served on active duty until September 1988.

In 1988, Sheridan joined the Louisiana Army National Guard. She deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2008, where she served as the director of the project management office on the Task Force to Improve Business and Stability Operations.

Sheridan’s military education includes the Adjutant General Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, the Combined Arms Staff Services School, the Command and General Staff College and the U.S. Army War College, where she received her master’s degree in strategic studies.

Sheridan is the daughter of retired Command Sergeant Major Joe S. Fernald and the late Marion Colbeth Voita. She and her husband Mark reside in New Orleans and have two sons, Patrick and Daniel.