The South African Navy has its first woman officer of a submarine.
Fish Hoek, South Africa – Lieutenant Gillian Malouw has become the first and only female officer in South Africa able to navigate a submarine, she is also the first in Africa, and one of the very few female submarine officers in naval countries around the world!
Malouw grew up in Port Elizabeth and says that she wanted to be in the navy from a very young age.
“I was a sea cadet from around Grade 7, but I was in Grade 9 when I made the decision I wanted to be in the navy. It is a very interesting environment. I think I work very well under pressure.”
The South African Navy (SAN) is the naval warfare branch of the South African National Defence Force. The role of the navy is to prepare for and to conduct naval operations in defence of the South African state, its citizens and interests and to carry out peacetime operations in support of other national objectives.
Other tasks include the maintenance, preservation and the provision of naval services in support of other state departments and authorities, including search and rescue, protection of maritime resources, and diplomatic sea transport support.
Malouw says she applied because of her love for the sea. Ultimately she always wanted to wear the uniform, and she always wanted to serve her country!
The passionate South African is the first female officer of a submarine, but her ultimate goal is to one day be the commander.
“Of course, for any officer that is the ultimate goal… this is just the start.”
Listen to the full interview below: