Principles to Guide You & Stories to Inspire You

West Point Woman

A Leadership Book for the Ages

The best leaders in the world have come out of West Point® — the likes of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, General George S. Patton, and corporate leaders, such as Marsh Carter, former Chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, and Alex Gorsky, former Chairman and CEO of Johnson & Johnson. In many ways, the United States Military Academy (USMA) — West Point® — is synonymous with leadership. Notably, however, the names that most people associate with this venerable institution have included only men.

The first few classes of women at West Point® faced numerous obstacles to graduate, yet through the cauldron of that experience, they developed a formidable hardiness that might surprise you.

Author, Speaker and Consultant

Meet Sara Potecha

Sara is an accomplished author, speaker and consultant who has led cultural transformation initiatives for Fortune 100 and 200 companies and coached hundreds of leaders to higher levels of performance. A masterful story teller, Sara is a sought-after speaker on such topics as women in leadership, veteran employment, emotional intelligence, change, resilience and leadership competency. 

West Point Woman

In West Point Woman, Sara delves into fundamental leadership precepts taught to her at a tender age at the United States Military Academy and applied in all her varied roles. She captures her audiences through powerful, and often hilarious, personal stories while teaching her readers how to cultivate the character within. West Point Woman is her first non-fiction business book.

West Point Woman is a leadership memoir for readers at all levels of organizational leadership, and applicable across industries, genders and professional expertise.


What are the LEADERSHIP SKILLS that the first women at West Point learned, which helped them succeed in an often-hostile environment?


What are the LEADERSHIP PRINCIPLES that make a West Point woman resilient and extraordinary, and how might you incorporate those tenets into your own leadership repertoire?

Proceeds from West Point Woman and speaking events benefit veteran services organizations.


“Potecha has found a way to give voice to my experiences and those of hundreds of other women and minorities who chose to attend an elite service academy. Her words are the threads that sew each of our experiences together, weaving them into a tapestry of shared sacrifice, commitment, and love of country. Her story is our story, and it reflects the best of what America is all about.”

Jeff Brown, former Naval aviator, Advisor to the Governor of Virginia

“One of the best books on leadership that I have encountered. Sara takes her unique experiences from the business world, motherhood and as one of the first women graduates from West Point and blends them all into stories that teach. As a mother and a woman in the corporate world, I found this book inspired me to continue to work on my own leadership style, learn from my challenges and continue to lead and develop those around me with both discipline and compassion.”

Michele McCauley, SVP HR, Apex Systems/Apex Life Sciences

“We learn best through stories; we grow best through adversity. Sara applies these ideas in her leadership memoir, West Point Woman. Professionally and personally, Potecha has experienced unique challenges and has demonstrated extraordinary resilience and grit. As one of the first women graduates at West Point, as a management consultant in the corporate world, as a young widow with three small children, Potecha shares her journey with us. In her poignant, yet practical, thought provoking, yet easy to read voice, West Point Woman translates her story into leadership lessons for all.”

Gail O’Sullivan Dwyer, Author of Tough As Nails: One Woman’s Journey through West Point

“In West Point Woman, Sara describes and gives credit to nine fundamentals which helped her through her journey to success. They are the tenets that result in strength in character, reinforce fair play and teamwork, while also accepting accountability as a professional and a human being.  I encourage all of us to read this book and remind ourselves of what it takes to be a winner and a valued person.  Let us endeavor as women and men to share these fundamentals and work as equal partners in making our world a better place for all.”

Rand Blazer, President, Apex Segment

“In West Point Woman, Sara Potecha has eloquently shared the gift of her “first woman” experiences at the Academy with us to refocus our leadership attributes, both personally and professionally.  While peeling back the layers, Sara exposes the balancing act of vulnerability and oftentimes humor required to be an effective leader.  An effective leader that can work through his or her own obstacles and challenges while also leading others through their own.  Sara is able to personify the principle of integrity by imploring readers to lead by action and not by words.”

Tierra Kavanaugh Wayne, CEO, TKT & Associates

“Sara Potecha uses her immense storytelling abilities to not only paint vivid pictures of what life was like for the first women graduates of West Point, but also because she uses those stories to teach us definitive lessons on leadership. These are stories of character that will cause every reader to look inwardly and want to get better. But she does not stop there. The author provides the reader with action steps to implement in order to ‘Cultivate Character.’ This is an immensely readable book for men and women, for soldiers and civilians, and for leaders and followers.”

Dave Anderson, USMA ’88, Best Selling Author of Becoming a Leader of Character: Six Habits that Make or Break a Leader at Work and at Home

“Motivating, inspiring, and encouraging. West Point Woman provides a unique and comprehensive view of what happens behind the veil of the Academy. Reading Sara’s stories reminded me of our resilience as human beings, and that through persistence we can accomplish our goals. I am always seeking new tools to motivate faculty, staff and students to achieve their full potential, never quit, and not to settle for anything less than their God-given talent will allow. Thanks to Sara, I now possess a powerful new resource to place in my toolbox.”

Dr. Van C. Wilson, Associate Vice Chancellor, Student Experience and Strategic Initiatives, Virginia’s Community Colleges

“In West Point, Sara’s stories give a vividly candid, humble, and, at times, humorous look at what the first classes of West Point women cadets and graduates endured to serve their country as officer leaders. Most impressively, Sara mines each experience to understand leadership principles that apply in any setting. These lessons make the book more than a memoire; Sara offers practical suggestions that you can use to grow as a leader of character AND help you make sense of the challenges you may face in your work setting.”

George B. “Barney” Forsythe, PhD; Brigadier General, U.S. Army (Retired); Professor Emeritus, U.S. Military Academy

Discover How Character is Created and Leadership is Learned​

Character and Leadership

West Point Woman, the new book by Sara Potecha, offers up a leadership arsenal. As an exceptional storyteller and leadership practitioner, Sara will arm you and your organization with the essential leadership skills needed to fight the “battles” of your current experience. Topics explored in the book include:


Doing the right thing, no matter the cost


Why building camaraderie matters


How humble leadership works


Finding solutions through innovation


The power of humor and laughter


Failing fast and moving ahead more quickly


The role of love in leading


Surviving death and loss in the midst of leading


Thriving in spite of “the system”


Leaving a leadership legacy through sponsorship and mentorship

Get Your Copy Today!

West Point Woman is a leadership memoir for readers at all levels of organizational leadership, and applicable across industries, genders and professional expertise. Proceeds from the sale of the book benefit veteran services organizations.

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