Captain Amber Manke is many things to many people. She is an ambitious soldier, dedicated student, loving daughter, supportive sister, caring aunt, thoughtful granddaughter, dependent friend, strong leader and passionate mentor. These many different aspects of who she is have shaped her into the woman she has become.
Through Amber’s adolescent years, she was constantly challenged with life events that tested her internal willpower and desire to succeed. She endured a life threatening illness before the age of two, physical and mental abuse by a caregiver, she lost everything she owned twice to house fires and she is one child in a family of 14, all of which barely defines Amber’s life. From these experiences she refused to become a statistic or let these circumstances define who she was or who she would become. Instead she has chosen to live her life “going against the grain” by demonstrating that she has the ability, passion and strength to be successful. Throughout her young adult years she reinforced this notion by consistently rising to the top in her academic endeavors and military service. She hopes to impart the knowledge she has learned through experience and education to empower others to overcome challenges they may view as road blocks on their journey to success and happiness. She will do this by continuing to be a strong mentor to the soldiers she leads.
In April 2012, Amber returned from an overseas deployment to Kuwait. She was overseas during the drawdown from Iraq and experienced firsthand the importance of having strong leaders in key positions to effectively impact change. With this leadership inspiration, she wants to continue her military service by contributing in every capacity as a change agent. Amber is currently pursuing Ph.D. in Human Resource Development.