2017 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing Finalist

Out Standing in the Field: A Memoir by Canada’s First Female Infantry Officer, by Sandra Perron (Gatineau), published by Cormorant

Sandra Perron

Out Standing in the Field: A Memoir by Canada’s First Female Infantry Officer
Cormorant Books

Sandra Perron

Jury Citation

Sandra Perron was the first female infantry officer in the Canadian Forces. In 1992, photos surfaced from a training exercise showing her tied to a tree, beaten, barefoot in the snow. That didn't bother her. What upset her was that, if she left her jacket somewhere out of sight, men in her unit would secretly rip the Van Doo patches off. Out Standing in the Field is a memoir about the challenges women face in hostile work environments and the toughness required to succeed. Compelling, readable, and brutally frank, Perron’s book helps us to see familiar issues in a new way.

About the Book

In this revealing and moving memoir, Canada's first female infantry officer describes her fight against a system of institutional sexism. Though repeatedly identified as top of her class throughout her training, Sandra Perron was subject to ongoing harassment by her male colleagues. Her military experience, however, wasn't all negative. Through two deployments to Bosnia and Croatia, Perron forged lasting friendships, and her determination helped pave the way for women's inclusion in the Armed Forces. Out Standing in the Field is the story of a soldier who refused to let her comrades or her country down, even while serving a military institution that failed her repeatedly. Beautifully written, Perron's memoir is a testament to her fortitude and patriotism, and serves as proof that the spirit of a true hero cannot be bent or broken.

About the Author

Sandra Perron served 13 years in the Canadian Armed Forces and was the country’s first female infantry officer. She is a senior partner with A New Dynamic Enterprise Inc. and a past member of the board of governors for the Corps des Commissionaires du Quebec. She is the founder and president of the Imagine Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting a school that shelters Albino orphans in Tanzania. Perron lives in Gatineau, Quebec.




Woodcock Fund



Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing


September 19 for books published between June 20 and September 18, 2018


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