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    ‘I am Navy Medicine, Marquita Y. Hooks, healthcare litigation paralegal at NMRTC Bremerton’

    ‘I am Navy Medicine, Marquita Y. Hooks, healthcare litigation paralegal at NMRTC Bremerton’

    Photo By Douglas Stutz | Personifying service before self and exemplifying jointness in all she does...Marquita...... read more read more



    Story by Douglas Stutz 

    Naval Hospital Bremerton

    Before the word ‘jointness’ became a regular theme in Navy’s Medicine’s jargon on fostering good working rapport with other service branches, there was jointness personified working at then-Naval Hospital Bremerton.

    Meet Marquita Y. Hooks, healthcare litigation paralegal at Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command (NMRTC) Bremerton.

    Hooks, from Mobile, Ala. and a John L. Leflore High School 1981 graduate, currently has 35 years of combined service to her country, 20 years of active duty in the U.S. Army followed by 15 years – and counting – on federal service. Added to such accumulated experience and extensive background, she has achieved an Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree from University of South Alabama in 1985, an Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1994 from St. Martin’s University, Lacey, Wash., and a Master of Arts, Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma in 2004.

    “I joined the United States Army in 1985 and retired after 20 years in 2005 with the rank of sergeant first class. During my first four years in the Army, I was a water purification specialist. Then, in 1989, I attended the Army’s Paralegal School and served as a paralegal specialist until I retired in 2005,” said Hooks, noting that during her Army career she was also the medical claims investigator for Madigan Army Medical Center from 1994 to 1998.

    Her duty stations have included Seoul, South Korea; Fort Lewis, Wash.; Fort Rucker, Ala.; Heidelberg, Germany; Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.; Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, Wash.; 121st General Hospital, Seoul, South Korea (upon requested by name by a ranking Army major general); United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), Scott Air Force Base, Ill. (requested by an Army lieutenant general); and 1st Infantry Division, Wurzburg, Germany.

    Hooks attests her most memorable experiences are from all of the leadership courses which instilled the 14 leadership traits, such as dependability, initiative, and integrity, “which encompassed what the epitome of a great leader should be and the traits they should possess,” she said.

    “These traits not only taught me to take pride in everything that I touched, but also to display character, competence and compassion,” continued Hooks. “Because I lived those traits every day of my Army career, I was selected by the cadre at four out of four leadership courses as the Distinguished Honor Graduate, which comprised academics and scenario based leadership performance. However, at my fourth leadership course, I also won the Distinguished Leadership Award, which was an honor to bestow because you had to excel in your leadership role - mine was platoon leader - and be selected by your peers to win this award. Winning this award was one of the most memorable of all of my experiences while honorably and faithfully serving my country.”

    Upon retirement, the Army senior enlisted non-commissioned officer was presented with a proposal to good to pass up.

    “Naval Hospital Bremerton gave me an offer and job opportunity that I could not refuse. They offered to hire me in my current position here as the healthcare litigation paralegal, which was and still happens to be my dream employment opportunity. I performed these same duties while on active duty at Madigan Army Medical Center as the medical claims investigator. It was my prayer that I would be able to perform the same job someday, but in a civilian capacity,” Hooks related.

    As healthcare litigation paralegal at NMRTC Bremerton, Hooks handles investigations concerning administrative claims, as well as providing directorial assistance to staff members for their legal needs.

    “When needed, I’m (also) tasked by the health law attorney for Naval Medical Forces Pacific to investigate administrative claims for naval medical facilities throughout the Pacific Northwest and California,” Hooks said. “Navy Medicine has taken me positively and unequivocally to the top of my professional game. I plan to continue to soar in Navy Medicine as we prepare to transition into our future endeavors with DHA and our mission of operational relevance and readiness.”

    Hooks has held numerous, notable positions throughout her career, such as medical claims investigator, third party collections and affirmative claims for Madigan Army Medical Center; Crisis Reaction Team (Battle Staff) with Joint Command (USTRANSCOM); Law Office manager for 1st Infantry Division; senior paralegal, Human Resources Command (Employment and Labor Law); and healthcare litigation paralegal here at NMRTC Bremerton.

    Hooks’ investigative dedication, analytical skill, and litigation experience were not only honed from her higher education accomplishments and her years handling similar duties while on active duty. There’s a direct correlation to years competing as an athlete, where her drive, discipline, and determination augmented her skill level.

    “I played basketball at the collegiate level at the University of South Alabama. However, after a couple of years of playing and always traveling with the team, I decided to stop playing to focus on academics. I joined the Army in 1985 where I continued to be an athletic standout in softball, volleyball and basketball. I was on the Traveling Post and All-Army Basketball Teams. I met my amazing and supportive spouse in Wurzburg, Germany in 2004, and we got married here in 2015 on our 11th year anniversary,” shared Hooks.

    Hooks cited that the best part about her Navy Medicine career at NMRTC Bremerton has been the encouragement, collaboration, and assistance received to help handle the responsibilities of the job.

    “My leadership has given me the autonomy to perform my duties as I deem necessary. I have a very difficult and sensitive job to perform, but the JAGs, physicians, nurses, medical records’ staff and numerous other support staff have allowed me to perform my duties with ease and without hindrance. I thank everyone,” said Hooks.

    With Navy Medicine’s renewed emphasis on operational readiness and NMRTC Bremerton’s core mission focused on producing force medical readiness and medical force readiness, Hooks’ contributions might be behind the scene, but they are a crucial part of the command’s overall accountability and oversight.

    “My duties clear the path for military members to prepare to achieve operational readiness by being able to concentrate on our core mission of medical force readiness. I help our Sailors have their legal documents, such as special powers of attorneys, will worksheets, notarizations, advance health care directives and medical powers of attorney, are in order,” commented Hooks.

    Being part of Navy Medicine also provides a special significance to Hooks, allowing her a tailored fit opportunity to continue and build upon her Army active-duty career.

    “My devotion is to our one team and one mission, and taking care of the one thing that matters the most in our Navy – our people and our healthcare providers,” Hooks said.

    When asked to sum up her experience with Navy Medicine at NMRTC Bremerton in one sentence, Hooks replied, “My experience here has made me realize that being a civil servant is not about me. It’s bigger than me and being here has allowed me to provide selfless service to our Legal Department and healthcare staff alike.”



    Date Taken: 02.20.2020
    Date Posted: 02.20.2020 17:26
    Story ID: 363551
    Location: BREMERTON , WA, US 

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