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Major Relkin led police training in Iraq

MADISON – Leslie Relkin entered the U.S Army in 1991 as Private First Class and retired as Major in 2016. 

“I originally joined the Army Reserves to help pay for college. Who knew I would make a career and retire 25 years later?” Relkin said.

In 1991, she reported to Fort Jackson, S.C. for Basic training and then Fort Sam Houston, Texas for Advanced Individual Training in Medical Specialist School to become a Combat Medic. Transferring to Alabama Army National Guard, she joined HHB, 1-203rd Air Defense Artillery Patriot Battalion in Huntsville.

Relkin completed 14T10 Patriot Launcher Crewmember and Maintainer course and became the battalion’s Assistant Intelligence Sergeant. She then worked as AGR Soldier with Alabama Army National Guard for 20 years. 

Patriot battalion headquarters moved to Athens. Her new position was Assistant Operations Sergeant. After attending Officer Candidate School, Relkin was commissioned as Second Lieutenant in 2000.

Next, Relkin attended Air Defense Artillery Officer Basic Course at Fort Bliss, Texas. She became Launcher Platoon Leader, C Battery, 1-203rd Air Defense Artillery Patriot in Hartselle.

Subsequent assignments included Fire Control Platoon Leader in Scottsboro and Logistics Officer and Commander of HHB in Athens. She transitioned as Military Police Officer and held positions of Battlefield Circulation Control Officer, Area Security Officer and Law and Order Operations Officer, 203rd Military Police Battalion. 

Supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom, Relkin deployed to Basra, Iraq in 2009-2010 as Battalion Training Officer and Battle Captain. “I was in charge of the tactical operations center for Police Transition Training in southeast Iraq,” she said. 

After deployment, Relkin worked as Professor of Military Science for SROTC Department at University of North Alabama until retirement in 2016.  

With her stepdad in the Army, she was born in Panama City, Panama; her family moved to Madison when she was nine years old. Her brother is an Army Ranger with worldwide deployments.

Currently, Leslie Relkin works as Senior Software Systems Engineer for SAIC. Her husband Justin Relkin is a government contractor overseas as a firefighter. Her son, Nick Nelson, is a Madison Academy eighth-grader.

“My two crazy dachshunds, Louis and Chanel, are part of our family and enjoy traveling with us,” she said. The Relkins enjoy attending Nick’s MA football games and recreational baseball, MA and Huntsville Youth choirs and time at the beach.

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