Meet Christopher Markesino
Manager of Building Services for Sunnyside Medical Center and Commander of Charlie Company 141 Brigade Support Battalion, Oregon Army National Guard
Chris Markesino joined the Oregon Army National Guard in 2000 and his current rank is major. He was looking for a way to serve his country while also pursing his educational goals at Southern Oregon University, where he received a BS in health promotion/fitness management. During his 15 years in the National Guard, he was deployed to the Middle East three times serving two years in Egypt, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Chris joined KP in 2005 as a data analyst and spent six years as a project manager for Internalization and Expansion before assuming the role of manager of building services for Kaiser Permanente Westside Medical Center. Upon his return from Afghanistan in 2015 Chris assumed his current role as a manager of Building Services for Kaiser Permanente Sunnyside Medical Center in Clackamas, Oregon.
Kaiser Permanente is a great employer for both veterans and active service members:
“My military experience has helped me to personally be a better person and a better employee. Kaiser Permanente has not only supported me and my service obligation but has also encouraged me to bring the skills that I have learned in the military and incorporate them in my current Kaiser Permanente position. My managers have been extremely supportive of my obligation and desire to serve in the Oregon Army National Guard. They accommodate my training and drill schedules, making it possible to successfully manage my dual roles.”
Thriving through physical and mental challenges:
Chris is an active triathlete and runner, which allows him to test his endurance and his limits. His favorite type of run is a mud run/obstacle course. Recently Chris completed a 13-mile obstacle course in Canada with some friends from Kaiser Permanente. This is also one of the reasons why he enjoys being in the Army National Guard. “After 15 years of service, I am still being pushed mentally and physically.”
No regrets about joining the military:
“Joining the Army National Guard is still one of the best decisions I have made. I could spend hours talking about my experiences while serving, the training I have received or the deployments I have been on; but what I value most is the time spent with other soldiers: the bonds we’ve formed, the challenges we’ve faced, and the experiences we've had.” The National Guard has provided Chris with opportunities to see parts of the world he never expected to experience including Egypt, Israel, South Africa, Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Germany (just to name a few).
The Army National Guard is different from the other branches of the military because it provides both a state and federal mission. Members of the Guard are ready to deploy either around the country or around the world depending on the need. The Oregon Army National Guard has been called upon for disaster response to forest fires and flooding, and to perform search and rescue operations while also fulfilling their global deployment requirements.
Advice for Transitioning Veterans Interested in Kaiser Permanente’s Opportunities
“Reach out to your local VA or Multicultural Business Resource Group (MBRG) for transition assistance. You can also get a sponsor to help with skills translation or validation. We also have a skills translator Military Skill Translator.”