Lisa Firmin - Biography
Lisa Firmin is the Associate Provost for Faculty and Student Diversity and Recruitment at The University of Texas at San Antonio. In this role, she coordinates efforts between Academic and Student Affairs to attract a high quality, diverse student population. Additionally, she works at the strategic level to address faculty diversity and placement goals.
Lisa recently retired from the United States Air Force as a colonel and its most senior ranking Latina. She has held key leadership and command positions throughout her 30-year military career and is a highly decorated officer. Most notable was her combat tour in Iraq, where she was the first colonel to command the expeditionary mission support group at Balad Air Base during Operation Iraqi Freedom and was awarded the Bronze Star medal for her efforts. Additionally, Lisa led 1,600 personnel as commander of the 27th Mission Support Group at Cannon Air Force Base in New Mexico in the day-to-day operations of the base. Lisa led the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps Detachment 842 at UTSA to national distinction by earning the Right of Line Award as the best large detachment in the nation in 2009. She served as department chair of Aerospace Studies and taught the Evolution of Air Power course while serving as the commander of UTSA’s AFROTC detachment. She also was featured as a 21st Century Air Force Leader in the Air Force’s Junior ROTC high school senior year textbook. She has extensive recruiting and retention experience at the Air Force’s headquarters in the Pentagon, and her expertise in diversity management is well known throughout the Air Force and the Department of Defense. Lisa’s paper, Hispanics: An Untapped Leadership Resource (authored in 2002 while attending Air War College), has been cited by others researching diversity and military leadership.
Lisa has received many honors and accolades, such as the Legion of Merit medal, the Major T. H. Baca Award as the top military woman in New Mexico, The Governor of Texas’ Yellow Rose Commission Award, Heroes and Heritage Award, and San Antonio’s Northside Education Foundation’s Pillar of Character Award. She was the first Armed Forces recipient of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce National Latina Leader Award in 2010 and has been featured in local print, radio, television and national magazines.