Alpa Ladani: Highest-ranking Indian-American female officer to serve in the US armed forces in Kabul

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Alpa Ladani is the highest-ranking Indian-American female officer to serve in the United States’ armed forces in Kabul, Afghanistan (2015). Through her 19 years of service, she has been a combat medic, a military police officer, and currently serves as an adjutant general officer.

She has served both in Iraq and in Afghanistan, and is currently stateside. She also works with the Boston Public Health Commission’s Office of Public Health Awareness.

Ladani-resizeINDIA New England News: Please tell our readers about your work and what you enjoy most about it?

Alpa Ladani: Over the course of my 19-year career in the United States Army, I have had the privilege of working as a Combat Medic, Military Police Officer and currently serving as an Adjutant General Officer. What I enjoy most about my job is taking care of soldiers.  By making sure all aspects of their personal life and professional life are at taken care of, I can ensure soldier readiness.  In addition to my military career, I also work for the Boston Public Health Commission’s Office of Public Health Preparedness.

Overall, I’ve had the opportunity to be part of something bigger than myself and I wouldn’t change it ever.

woy-outstanding-logo INE: To which charitable, community and professional group do you belong and why?

AL: Military Officers Association of America, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Indian Association of Greater Hartford. I belong to these two groups because it allows me to connect professionally with other Officers past and present as well as interact with members of my community.

INE: What are your hobbies and interest?

AL: My hobbies include traveling, spending time with my family and friends and exploring the city of Boston.

INE:   In what way you feel you have most positively influenced or served the local community and your company/organization and professional field.

AL: I feel that I have served as a positive influence to young women in my community as a whole and even more so as a minority female serving as an officer in the US Army.  My choice to join and continue to serve in the Army is not a career path that many understand.  It is not a norm and goes against the grains of our culture.  Well, it did 19 years ago, however, over the years; I have seen a greater number of Eastern Indian serving in the military which makes me proud.

As an Emergency Planner for the Boston Public Health Commission, I am able to bring all my experiences from the Military into the public sector which allows me to better serve the residents of Boston.

INE:  Your rare talent?  

AL: I’m a self-proclaimed Red Velvet Cupcake Connoisseur and great at Event Planning.  I’ve planned numerous weddings and other special events.

INE:  Your favorite books?

AL: “The Glass Palace” by Amitav Ghosh

INE: Your favorite quotes?

AL: “People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway. If you are honest, people may cheat you. Be honest anyway. If you find happiness, people may be jealous. Be happy anyway. The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway. For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.” ― Mother Teresa

INE: Who inspires you the most?

AL: My mom and dad inspire me.  They are my foundation and my biggest support system.  They emigrated from India, working tirelessly to insure that my Sisters and I had the best the life they could provide.  When faced with adversities life sent their way, they faced them head on and always provided a loving and fun environment.

INE: Your core value you try to live by? 

AL: Since 1997 when I joined the Army, the following have been core values ingrained in me.  The acronym used for these core values is LDRSHIP with each letter standing for the following:  Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Integrity and Personal Courage.  I strive to live by them within all aspects of my life.

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