Major Honor

Major Marisol A. Chalas '96

Major Marisol A. Chalas, ’96 Academy Engineering grad, was recently selected as a 2017 Army Congressional Fellow by the U. S. Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness.  The Fellowship will begin in May 2016 and end in December 2017.

Major Marisol A. Chalas was born in the Dominican Republic and came to the US at the age of nine.  MAJ Chalas began her military career as an enlisted soldier in the Army in July 1990 and was commissioned as Second Lieutenant in the Aviation branch from the Georgia Military Institute Officer Candidate School.  In addition to her MMA BS in Marine Engineering, Chalas also earned a Masters of Business Administration from J. Mack Robinson School of Business, Georgia State University.  Her military education credentials are extensive, ranging from Aviation Officer Basic Course to Strategic Fellows Program at the Institute of World Politics in Washington D. C.

MAJ Chalas has served in various leadership positions, ranging from Lean Six Sigma advisor, Battle Captain and Platoon Leader during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Aviation Liaison officer for New Horizons-CJTF Barahona, FORSCOM G-4 Aviation Readiness Officer, and two rotations as Company Commander.  She also served as the Aviation Force Integrator for USARC G-3/5/7 Aviation Directorate and most recently as the U.S. Army Reserve Exchange Officer serving with the Canadian Forces in Kingston, Ontario, Canada.
Today the Major (also a Blackhawk pilot) is serving as Battalion Operations Officer for 7-158th Aviation Regiment (Attack Reconnaissance Battalion) in Conroe Texas.  She is also on the Academy Board of Trustees.

"Never in my wildest dreams would I have envisioned myself working as an Army Congressional Fellows, much less working in the Capitol along Congress Staff ... This continues to prove that hard work, perseverance and determination gives you the ability to achieve the impossible," Chalas noted. “I give all the credit for this extraordinary honor to Massachusetts Maritime Academy, the Army and the work ethic my parents instilled in me as I continue to pursue challenging opportunities," she finished.

The major will also be pursuing a second master’s degree, this time at the George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management as part of this impressive assignment.