Chicago Cohort 4
Favorite Baked Goods
Sweet Potato Herb Bread
Aleson “Tornado Alee” Wheeler is from Plainview, TX. She attended College of Southern Nevada for a degree in Pastry Arts. Her last position in the industry was with Boma at Animal Kingdom Lodge in Disney World. She was laid off during the pandemic, which provided the time necessary to do some soul searching. She was no longer passionate about baking. Her mom, MK, rebuilds and refinishes antique furniture, and Alee remembered how much she loved doing that with her. This gave her the inspiration to pursue a career in a new field: woodworking. Alee then attended Charleston Woodworking School for Fine Woodworking and Antique Restoration.
The nickname Tornado was given to her because of her tenacity and refusal to give up. She’s a force of nature; unstoppable until the goal is achieved. Alee joined the Navy as an SK (Storekeeper, “Box kicker”) on July 30, 2003. She is a combat veteran who deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. She also served on the USNS Comfort, which is a Mercy-class hospital ship that provides emergency, on-site care for U.S. combatant forces in war or other operations.
While browsing a veteran newsletter, Alee learned about Dog Tag and the opportunities they provide. After doing more research on the organization, she felt like it would be an opportunity to be part of something extraordinary! Fellowships provide resources, support, and professional networks to pursue goals you might not otherwise be able to achieve. They engage you in challenging and varied work, and can open up opportunities that may have never presented themselves otherwise. These are all things Alee is ecstatic about gaining from the Dog Tag Fellowship Program.
Ms. Wheeler dedicates as much time as possible to volunteering. She is an active member of Team Rubicon, and also volunteers at Habitat for Humanity and her local food bank. “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” She feels best when giving back, and believes we should all use whatever gift we have received to serve others.
Alee’s favorite baked good is sweet potato herb bread.