Military Spotlight: St. Jude salutes its employee veterans

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital salutes all veterans, reservists and those on active duty this Veterans Day.

Lt. Col Rhonda Archie

As an Army reservist with 32 years of service, Lt. Col. Rhonda Archie learned the Army’s values of loyalty, duty, respect, selflessness, honor, integrity and personal courage, and the importance of applying them to her career and personal life. She still attends monthly battle assembly training on weekends. During the week, those values translate to her work at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, where she is a senior clinical analyst in the Information Sciences Department.

Archie is one of scores of St. Jude employees who currently serve or have served in the U.S. military. These dedicated employees’ leadership skills, discipline and talents that were forged through military service are an invaluable piece of the hospital’s mission.

“I strive to seek ways to contribute to our hospital’s mission by making our patients’ experiences better,” Archie said. “Serving in a leadership role at St. Jude, it’s important for me to treat everyone I encounter with the utmost respect and to perform my duties to the best of my abilities.”

During her service, Archie has received the Armed Forces Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Army Reserve Components Overseas Training Ribbon, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal and the Army Achievement Medal.

Archie’s decision to join the U.S. Army Reserve was one rooted in family. Her cousin, who served in the U.S. Army for several years on active duty, shared with her the value of his experiences and accomplishments, which encouraged her to pursue military service. In addition, Archie wanted to set a positive example for her nieces and nephews, showing them that the world has a variety of opportunities to explore.

Family also plays an important role in the efforts of St. Jude to provide assistance to its military employees. In 2010, St. Jude created an internal Military Support Resource Group that hosts events for veterans, active-duty military personnel, reservists and those who have immediate family members in the military. The group also provides family-member assistance, recognizes and celebrates achievements within the group, and organizes calls with employees and family members of those who are deployed.

In 2012, the hospital unveiled the Military Tribute Wall, which recognizes hospital employees who are current service members and veterans. The wall features military awards and highlights military-related events. St. Jude also recruits veterans, guardsmen and reservists for employment through hiring events and the Department of Defense’s Hero2Hired program.

In September 2014, Archie was one of four armed services personnel who joined a St. Jude delegation at the Pentagon to accept the Secretary of Defense employer Support Freedom Award for the hospital’s support of employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserve. She is a licensed medical technologist and will earn her doctorate of philosophy in Health Informatics from the University of Missouri in May 2016.