August 2019 Veteran Spotlight: Alea Cox

Alea Cox while serving in the Air Force
Alea Cox while serving in the Air Force

This month, VMSI is thrilled to honor Alea Cox for our August VetSpot!

  • Name:  Alea Cox
  • Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
  • Branch: U.S. Air Force
  • Years of Service: 2 Years Active Duty
  • Any awards or medals: Air Force Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Air Force Training Ribbon, Distinguished Graduate at contracting school

Alea chose to enter the U.S. Air Force in order to provide service to a greater mission and for the career opportunities it would afford her in the future. During her time in the U.S. Air Force, Alea enjoyed the challenge of completing the mission with others and learning how the sum of the whole can far exceed what each individual can do on their own.  Alea was stationed in both Ohio and Alabama and recalls that both duty stations were memorable in their own way.

While in the U.S. Air Force, Alea worked in operational contracting both as an Activity/Organizational Program Coordinator for the government purchase card program and as a contract specialist, as well as led the effort in a base-wide major database system development and implementation. As a VMSI team member, Alea currently supports the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Western Acquisition Division, National Marine Fisheries Service as a Contracts Subject Matter Expert.

Alea recommends these tips for anyone transitioning into civilian life:

  1. Everyone experiences turbulence once they stop wearing the uniform every day and the feelings that come along with it are TOTALLY normal.  There is a large veteran community with a lot of resources to help you through the transition, and it’s okay to ask for help.  Whether you’re in or out of the uniform – we still don’t leave each other behind.
  2. The sooner you file your disability paperwork – the better.  If you need help with it – the American Legion or Disabled American Veterans (DAV) association are both excellent resources to help you.
  3. Know your options!  Learn and read what benefits are available to you.  You have earned every single one of them – regardless of if you feel like it or not.  Do the research – don’t just take what people say as truth.  Find the regs, know your rights.

Thank you for your service, Alea, and for sharing your experiences with the #VMSIFamily!