University of Idaho to Host Dinner for Community Veterans

Friday, November 8 2013

MOSCOW, Idaho – As a way to show gratitude to those who served in the military, the University of Idaho will host a dinner and keynote speaker for university and community veterans on Monday, Nov. 11 from 5:30 p.m. in the Student Union Building Ballroom.

“Honoring our veterans is really important to me. When I became GPSA president, I felt I could make a difference and really show appreciation to those who have served in the military,” said Kate Cobb, president of the Graduate and Professional Student Association. “This dinner is a way for the University of Idaho to show our appreciation for their service.”

The evening begins at 5:30 p.m. with a social hour, followed by a barbecue buffet dinner at 6:30 p.m. Col. Robert Wakefield will give the keynote speech. The evening is free to all veterans and one guest. For each additional guest and non-veterans, tickets cost $10.

Wakefield received his bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley. He is a graduate of the Marine Corps Command and Staff College and the Naval War College. He holds a master’s degree in public administration. His command and staff tours have included operations officer at battalion, Regiment Division and Fleet Marine Force; commanding officer of two companies, two battalions, and a regiment; and chief of staff at Brigade and Fleet Marine Force Headquarters.

Wakefield commanded two reconnaissance units and, as a parachutist and scuba diver, pioneered in the use of submarines for amphibious reconnaissance. He was involved in developing the Marine Corps Live Fire Exercise program to its present form. He saw combat service in Vietnam, including the Tet Offensive and the battle of Hue City.

After he retired as chief of the general staff, Fleet Marine Force Pacific in June 1989, Wakefield attended law school at the University of Idaho. He lives in Moscow where he practices law, as well as serves as a volunteer firefighter. He recently returned from an assignment in Afghanistan for the State Department Justice Support Program.

“Col. Wakefield’s commitment to his country and his extraordinary leadership is an example of the type of veterans who call Idaho home,” said Cobb. “We are very pleased to have him take the time to speak at our event.”

All proceeds go to UI’s Operation Education, the nation’s leading scholarship and assistance program for military veterans with disabilities. The program is available to military personnel who sustained permanent disability while serving the nation since Sept. 11, 2001. Spouses of qualifying veterans also are eligible for the scholarship.

This event is sponsored by the UI’s Graduate and Professional Student Association and the UI’s College of Law Veterans Law Association. To RSVP, contact Angel Betancourt at

About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit