A TCU instructor has been appointed a deputy commander by the U.S. Air Force Reserve.Col. Robert Kelsey, clinical instructor for the School of Nurse Anesthesia, said he was recently appointed as deputy commander of the 701st Medical Squadron at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base of Fort Worth.
Kelsey said the squadron is a unit with about 200 members designed to provide trained medics in case of war.
Kelsey said he served as chief nurse at the 701st Squadron six years ago. Since then, Kelsey said he has been instructing at TCU and spent a year administering anesthesia at Sheppard Air Force Base.
Kelsey said he was appointed to another job with the 701st Squadron because of his job specialty, past performance, rank, and prior experience in leadership and management positions in the Air Force Reserve.
Kelsey said this position promotes him to second in command and possibly next in line as commander if the current commander decides to retire.
“This job was an opportunity to drill close to home with folks I had worked with for many years,” Kelsey said.
As part of the Reserve, Kelsey is only required to spend one weekend per month and two weeks in the summer at the base, he said.
Kelsey said although this job has many responsibilities such as working on commander-assigned projects, aiding in training, and maintaining wartime readiness skills, the promotion will not affect other aspects of his life.
“I will continue teaching at TCU as well as working in a local day surgery center,” Kelsey said.
Kelsey said his father was in the Air Force, and he grew up living on military bases.
He said his family, TCU, and the Air Force are the most significant things in his life.
“I feel like all the important things in my life are very tightly woven together,” Kelsey said.
Laura Kelsey, Robert Kelsey’s daughter, a junior advertising/public relations major, said her father seems stern but has a good sense of humor.
“Honestly, my dad is one of my heroes in life,” Laura Kelsey said.
However, if the squadron were to mobilize and be put on active duty, Robert Kelsey said the position would become a full-time job for the length of the deployment.
In the past, Kelsey said, he also worked with TCU’s Air Force ROTC.
“Working with the cadets was some of the most rewarding time of my Reserve career,” he said.