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Sonoran Desert Institute

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Meet Tabitha Reynolds, SDI’s newest Field Representative

Meet Tabitha Reynolds, Sonoran Desert Institute’s (SDI’s) newest SDI Field Representative. She has a quiet and unassuming persona but don’t let that fool you, she is a twelve-year veteran of the United States Army. Tabitha’s service saw her as an MP for eight years and a career counselor for four years. This experience combined with one and a half years working in VA Outreach helping veterans adjust to civilian life has built someone who is passionate about helping veterans and steadfast in finding the best fit for potential students. In other words, she’s the perfect fit as an SDI Field Representative for SDI.

Tabitha has been around the military her entire life. Her father was in the United States Air Force and she spent most of her youth moving with her family to various bases. By the time she graduated High School, the military seemed like the most viable option for someone such as her, still trying to find her place. She wanted to figure out her future path and she wanted to prove herself as a strong and capable woman. She picked the right path. Tabitha did not quite know what to expect when she joined the United States Army and what she found took her by surprise. “All of a sudden I’m surrounded by commotion, tanks, and rifles. It was awesome!” She said. While basic training can be a chore for some, this was not the case with Tabitha. “Honestly, basic training was a blast. It was like one giant adventure camp. It was grueling, but I loved it.”

Tabitha found her way to the SDI family by accident. She was initially investigating it as a possibility for her husband to attend. Her Platoon Sergeant, Walter Howard, SDI’s Director of Military and Veteran Services, “who she refers to as her Army dad,” worked with SDI so she reached out to him for information. Having known of her background as a career counselor, it was not long before Walter offered her a job. In December of 2018, Tabitha started working for SDI and her husband is now a student. For Tabitha, SDI is definitely a family affair.

While SDI has many perks for Tabitha such as a family-like atmosphere and the ability to help find the right fit for potential students, her favorite perk of her job is the travel. As Tabitha stated, “I absolutely love how each region of the United States has its own culture, a way of communicating, and different interests. It’s definitely not boring.” So far, her favorite experience was the Arizona Game and Fish Department Outdoor Expo. “I got to shoot an M249 at the Expo. It had been a few years since I had operated one so it was great to know that I could still handle it!”

In her off time, Tabitha spends as much time as possible with her three children and her husband, “Also an Army veteran.” She takes a keen interest in her husband’s school work since he is enrolled at SDI. She enjoys camping, fishing, and target shooting. Tabitha see’s her position at SDI as full of potential with the opportunity to grow the school. Her driving ambition as an SDI Field Representative is to find a student that will take the program seriously in order to ensure their success. Her favorite question, “Do you really want this?” Tabitha has found several terrific fits for the SDI program and it can be a sure bet that she will find many more. Sonoran Desert Institute is lucky to have staff like Tabitha Reynolds!