I became a nurse out of an interest to be able to provide care for patients and families, teach, conduct research and provide leadership in the healthcare profession. Nursing gives you the opportunity to do all these. Joining the United States Air Force in 1984, I have served in various clinical leadership positions in pediatrics to include critical care, chronic care, primary care and clinical research. I have also had the opportunity to serve as a fellow in the Office of the Surgeon General. Being a nurse gives a person unlimited opportunities and potential to make a difference in so many aspects of healthcare around the world. Air Force nursing in particular gives you the chance to endeavor in many specialty and leadership areas of nursing. During my nursing career, I've had the opportunity to serve as the Consultant to the Surgeon General for Pediatrics and Research, represent the Department of Defense on the National Advisory Council for Research at the National Institutes of Health, work with the State Department and American Academy of Pediatrics to develop a healthcare plan for children affected by the Tsunami Disaster in Asia, and participate in humanitarian work in developing countries around the world.