The U.S. Armed Forces has five armed service branches and operates in more than 100 countries worldwide. Two graduates who have dedicated their military careers to serving others are among selected former students to be honored by the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Alumni Association.
In October, Col. Jane C. (Barta) Vesel will receive a Distinguished Alumni Award and Lt. Lindsey Stoil will receive an Outstanding Young Alumni Award.
Vesel, of Marthasville, Missouri, graduated from UW Oshkosh with a bachelor’s in nursing in 1986. She entered the Air Force’s high-risk obstetrical nurse training program and graduated with honors. After completing additional Air Force Institute of Technology training, she began her career as a nurse midwife and obstetrical leader at various overseas and stateside duty locations.
When deployed in 2010-2011, Vesel served as the chief nurse of the largest Iraqi theatre hospital. During that time, Vesel and her team trained 36 allied and Iraqi medical partners in the areas of trauma management, advance cardiac life support and C-130 Aircraft Aeromedical training.
During her 27-year career, Vesel rose to the rank of colonel, working to update more than 20 Air Force protocols and 157 clinical operating instructions and develop and implement a hydrotherapy program for alternative pain management for laboring mothers. Vesel’s outstanding service record has been recognized through multiple awards, including the Global War on Terrorism Service medal, Military Outstanding Volunteer Service medal and most recently the 88th Air Base Wing Civilian of the Year award in 2016.
Vesel was deployed in Kuwait when she interviewed to be accepted into the doctorate of nursing program at UW Oshkosh.
“I can’t even begin to say how thankful I am for the entire college’s support I was literally in a tent in Kuwait when and Dr. Jambunathan and Dr. Westfall made sure I had all the tools I needed to complete my degree,” she said.
Fellow officer and colleague Andrea Shields watched as Vesel chased her dream of completing her DNP while successfully attending to the daily tasks of running a busy midwifery service at Wright Patterson Air Force Base.
“I certainly consider it an honor to have served alongside her. She embodies character, determination and passion and serves as a mentor to her peers whom often seek her guidance in the management of difficult obstetric patients,” said Shields.
Vesel retired from the Air Force in 2012 and continues to serve military families at the Scott Air Force base in Illinois as the senior nurse-midwife and preceptor for the family practice residency program.
Lt. Stoil of Falls Church, Virginia, graduated from UW Oshkosh in December 2008 with a bachelor’s in chemistry and a grad certificate in healthcare management and an MBA in 2009.
Shortly after graduation, Stoil began her career with the Marine Corps as a medical planner at the tactic level and a medical operations officer on the joint staff at the strategic level. In October 2013, the Defense Health Agency was created to coordinate medical operations for the 9.4 million active duty service members, military retirees and their families.
Stoil served as the chief of Naval Operations, where she played a critical role in the successful launch and maturation of the Defense Health Agency’s (DHA) healthcare operations by spearheading the first-ever contract baseline of 108 contracts valued at more than $87 billion dollars.
Capt. Edward Simmer works for the DHA as the deputy director for the Tricare Health Plan. Over his 26-year Naval career, he also had the opportunity to work with hundreds of Naval officers. To him, Lt. Stoil stands out as one of the best.
“Lt. Stoil has earned my trust and respect. I routinely rely on her business and personal expertise,” he said. “She ensures that projects stay on track, identifies innovative solutions and helps ensure America’s finest receive the medical care they need when and where they need it. She has a great future and is truly an outstanding example of a young leader who routinely performs far above expectations for someone with her rank and level of experience.”
Currently Stoil is a naval officer serving at DHA as the healthcare operations director of the joint strategic plans and integration officer. This role puts her in direct contact with senior leaders across the military, government and industry. Stoli credits her start and continued success to her education at UW Oshkosh.
“I was introduced to the military through UWO’s Army ROTC and rifle team and secured a spot within the Marines with the aid of Dr. McKenzie and the athletic training staff. My success within the department of defense is built upon the strategic tools and methodologies I learned through the MBA program,” Stoil said.
Vesel and Stoil will be among those honored at UWO’s Alumni Awards Celebration on Friday, Oct. 6, at the Alumni Welcome and Conference Center. The cost is $30 per person and includes dinner. For more information or to RSVP for the event, please call (920) 424-3449 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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