Milton Hershey School Alumna Receives Top Military Award
Milton Hershey School graduate and 2012 Alumna of the year, Captain Kimberly Elenberg ’88, recently received the third-highest award issued by the Department of Defense—the Defense Meritorious Service Medal. The award, issued by the U.S. Secretary of Defense, is in response to Elenberg’s work with the Department of Defense’s Coronavirus Task Force. It’s awarded to those who distinguish themselves through non-combat service.
From February 2020 through July 2021, Elenberg served as the Director for Force Modeling and Analytics for the Department of Defense. A doctor of nursing practice, an informaticist, public health administrator, educator, and a leader of national prevention strategies, Elenberg and her team used data analysis to help support the Office of the Secretary of Defense in its work with the White House Coronavirus Task Force.
The citation reads, “Captain Elenberg was instrumental in establishing an enterprise-wide common operating picture for Department of Defense senior leaders to respond to the Coronavirus pandemic.” It goes on to say, “Her public health background, technical competence, and data analytics were critical in translating the data and providing actionable products to assist the Department’s senior leadership’s decision-making in response to the Coronavirus 2019 pandemic.”
As for the public recognition, Elenberg said, “It’s really about the team—my work team and my family team. Sharing accomplishments with my younger MHS brothers and sisters can help inspire them. I truly appreciate the support and am hoping any student who wants to go into the fields of computer science, data analytics, and public health gets excited about the impact they can make on the world.”