2017 Tillman Scholar

Caroline Booth

Vanderbilt University
MSN, Midwifery

“The Army gave me the confidence to care for women facing life’s hardest challenges.”

Inspired by her older sister, Caroline’s childhood dream to attend West Point and serve in the Army began at the age of seven. Fifteen years later, she captained the Army women’s soccer team and majored in engineering management before graduating in 2009. Caroline commissioned as an engineer officer and quickly deployed to Diyala Province, Iraq.

Her deployment experiences as a platoon leader shaped Caroline’s character and challenged her far more than any classroom or soccer field. Her soldiers inspired her daily with their devotion to each other and the mission. From them, she learned the hardship and worries faced by their spouses at home and discovered that grit, strength and toughness are hallmark characteristics of military families.

After returning from Iraq and transitioning to the Reserves, the value of the Army family made an indelible mark on Caroline’s life when she and her husband tragically lost their infant son who was stillborn at 41 weeks. Caroline relied on the strength of her military family for support, as only a community all too familiar with loss can provide.

Having volunteered in local hospitals since leaving active duty, Caroline hopes to use her personal experiences and education to give back to the community which impacted her life tremendously. As a midwife, she’s eager to serve soldiers and spouses throughout her husband’s active duty career, contribute to a growing field of research into stillbirth causes and prevention, and continue volunteering with a new focus on serving underprivileged women who lack adequate natal care.