Paul T. Reidl
With awards like this, you expect to hear the words “Honor”, “courage” and “commitment.” After all, those words are the motto of the Marquette University NROTC Battalion. But those words are not limited to valor and heroism in combat.
Our 2017 Alumnus of the Year is Lieutenant Commander Paul T. Reidl, USN, Class of 1965. Paul’s older brother Joe was commissioned in the Navy here via NROTC in 1962. Paul joined this NROTC Unit in 1964, while he was enrolled in the College of Engineering. Upon graduation in 1965, he received his degree in civil engineering, and was commissioned a Navy Ensign. Because of an eyesight limitation, Paul’s first assignment was with the Navy Supply Corps. Paul then applied for service with the Navy Civil Engineer Corps and was accepted.
Paul graduated from the Navy Civil Engineer Corps school at Port Hueneme, California, and was assigned a two-year tour of duty on Guam. Guam lies in a strategically crucial U.S. location in the Pacific Rim. Typhoon Karen had virtually destroyed most structures on the island. Paul administered rebuilding contracts on Guam, and managed new projects in the crucial buildup for Vietnam.
When he completed his tour on Guam, Paul left active duty and served in the Naval Reserves for another eight years. He then became an “honorary retiree” at the rank of Lieutenant Commander. Returning to Marquette, Paul earned a master’s degree in Business Administration. A successful business career followed, including leadership positions with Bell telephone. Paul retired from Ameritech in 1994 and joined Technology Group, Inc. in Wauwatosa, retiring from business in 2012.
In 2009, Paul’s strong commitment to Marquette and NTORC came to the fore. In 2009 Paul led the way to incorporating the Marquette NROTC Alumni and Friends Association, Inc. He was president of the Alumni Board from 2010 to 2014, helping recruit alumni members and raise donations. He remained a director through 2015. From 2009 through 2014 he was also on the board of the Seapower Leadership Association, soliciting donations to support Midshipman
Lt. Austin Helm
Lieutenant Austin Helm, USN Is the first Navy officer from Marquette NROTC to be honored as Young Alumnus of the Year. He was Battalion Commanding Officer during the fall 2007 semester. He graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor degree in engineering, and was commissioned a Navy Ensign. Helm then graduated from the Navy Nuclear Power School and Navy Nuclear Prototype School, both in Charleston, S.C., and in October 2009 he graduated Navy Submarine Officers Basic Course at Groton, Connecticut.
His first sea duty was aboard the U.S.S. Pennsylvania, SSBN-735 in Bangor, Washington, on which he served as electrical assistant, reactor control assistant and communications officer. Later, aboard the U.S.S. Henry M. Jackson, SSBN-730, Helm earned at-sea qualification and completed two strategic deterrent patrols. He was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal for leadership, and expertise in control and maintenance of infrequently-performed testing to recertify submarine nuclear reactor performance.
Qualifying in submarines in 2011, Helm also passed the Prospective Nuclear Engineer Officer course, becoming a certified nuclear engineer. He reported to Strategic System Programs at Washington D.C. Navy Yard. Here he was Fleet Assessment Assistant, evaluating root cause analysis, corrective action and human element factors for Strategic Weapons Systems incident reports. Helm received the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal for program management and feedback products. He was honorably discharged from active duty in November 2014 and joined the Active Reserves. He served with Navy Reserve SUBLANT Underwater Warfare in Washington D.C. and is now in the Individual Ready Reserve.
As a civilian, Helm was licensed as a Certified Public Accountant in Virginia and belongs to the Association of Certified CPAs. He also became a Certified Fraud Examiner and is vice president of the District of Colombia Institute of Internal Auditors. He now works as a Federal Advisor Senior Consultant at Deloitte and Touche, LLP, managing information technology audit readiness for federal clients in national defense and national security.
Helm is a continuing dues-paid member of the Marquette NROTC Alumni & Friends Association, helping to lead Class of 2008 events. He belongs to American Legion Post 120 in West Allis, Wisconsin and has been selected for promotion to Lieutenant Commander.