Former Army medical commander to speak at Heidelberg


The Heidelberg University campus is to welcome the first woman and non-physician to serve as the acting surgeon general of the U.S. Army.

Maj. Gen. Gale Pollock became a certified nurse anesthetist soon after graduation from University of Maryland. While in the Army, Pollock served as commander of the U.S. Army Medical Command in addition to her surgeon general role. She was the 22nd chief of the Army Nurse Corps.

“This will be our 13th event in the Patricia Adams Lecture Series, which aims to bring women from different cultures, professions and life experiences who have attained preeminence in their fields to Heidelberg University for one day of engagement with students and the Tiffin community,” said Susan McCafferty, Heidelberg professor in the Honors Program and chair of the PALS selection committee. “Maj. Gen. Gale Pollock was an incredible find. She meets our criteria for a speaker because she is the first woman and first non-physician to hold the post of acting surgeon general of the U.S. Army. Given that there are over half a million active duty soldiers in the army, that’s quite an accomplishment.”

Pollok also established the Louis J. Fox Center for Vision Restoration in 2008 and was an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh Schools of Medicine and Nursing. In 2011, Pollock was named a Harvard University Fellow in the Advanced Learning Initiative.

Retired from the U.S. Army, Pollock serves on numerous advisory boards and is the owner of Pollock Associates LLC. She is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, the American Academy of Nursing and the National Board of Corporate Directors. She has a master’s degree in business administration from Boston University, healthcare administration from Baylor University and national security and strategy from the National Defense University.

McCafferty said Pollock’s presentations to students include two topics: life lessons from boot camp and the experience of being a pioneer in her field. To the community, her presentation, titled “How to Define and Attain Success,” will be about experiences and challenges that led to Pollock’s success.

“We hope the students will be inspired by her accomplishments and dare to dream big in their own professional lives after Heidelberg, that they can say ‘I can do that,'” she said.

Pollock’s keynote address is at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Seiberling Gymnasium.

Cost is $25 per person for the chicken or vegetarian option and $35 for the steak option.

For additional information or to make a reservation, visit