Energize!

For Veterans Day, a PSEG project manager looks back on years of military service

PSEG is fortunate to count many military veterans among our 13,000 employees – men and women who have served their country proudly and are now dedicated to carrying out PSEG’s vision of providing safe, reliable energy. This Veterans Day, we salute them and all Americans who have served.

One such employee is Rachel Lane, principal project manager at PSEG Long Island, who received her commission as second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force in September 2000 after graduating from Lehigh University with a degree in electrical engineering. Lane comes from a military family and the idea of service appealed to her.

“I wanted to be part of something bigger than myself,” Lane said. “I wanted to travel and have adventure.”

Assigned to a garrison duty station in Oklahoma City, Lane commanded about 50 airmen. A year after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, she was deployed to a small base on Masirah Island, off the coast of Oman in the Arabian Sea.

“We were supporting special operations and resupply missions that ran into Afghanistan,” Lane said. “We deployed tactical communications infrastructures, setting up satellite communications, telephones, computers and air traffic control systems for air bases.”

Lane remained in Oman until February 2003. Her active duty service ended in October 2004, when she retired as a captain. But her adventures were not finished. In 2007, while working for a major defense contractor, she embedded with a U.S. Army unit in Baghdad to maintain an intelligence gathering and processing system. She was responsible for repairing the equipment and training soldiers to operate it.

She worked in former Iraq ruler Saddam Hussein’s palace, a massive building surrounded by a moat.

“I never had to leave” she said. “The biggest threats we faced were rockets and mortars that were launched onto the base.”

Life at Home

Lane’s time in Iraq included another kind of adventure: meeting her future husband, an Army soldier and contractor. Their shared experiences in the Middle East are a strong foundation for their lives back home today.  

“He understands what I’ve been through, and is a good teammate and partner,” she said.

At PSEG, Lane has been able to apply her experience as an Air Force officer and military contractor – especially her leadership skills and ability to oversee complex, mission-critical jobs.

In managing capital construction projects, such as new or expanded substations in western Suffolk County, Long Island, she coordinates the design, permitting, construction, service sector and public affairs teams, enabling them to meet each project’s scope, schedule and budget.

On Veterans Day, she looks back on her military service with pride.

“Doing some of the things I had to do at such a young age gave me a lot of confidence in my ability to take on challenges and adapt to situations,” she said. “Being in the military and traveling all over the world has given me a lot of love and appreciation for my country.”

PSEG’s deep connection to veterans is intertwined with the fabric of our company and its rich history. PSEG is proud to be named as a Top Military Friendly Employer for seven consecutive years by ROI-NJ. We also are the proud recipient of the Military Friendly Employer award, the 7 Seals award, the New Jersey “We Value Our Veterans” Governor’s Award, and recently joined the Victory Media Military Spouse Friendly Employer ranks.

PSEG Editorial Team

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