WHM Spotlight: Staff Sgt. Laura Cde Baca

  • Published
  • By Kendahl Johnson
  • 75th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Editor’s note: As we celebrate Women’s History Month at Hill Air Force Base, we are featuring some of Team Hill’s female military and federal service employees through a series of spotlight articles.

Meet Staff Sgt. Laura Cde Baca, a pharmacy technician with the 75th Healthcare Operations Squadron. She serves as NCO in charge of support, working to ensure excellent patient care and satisfaction and continually looking for ways to improve processes.    

Cde Baca was born and raised in Bogota, Colombia. She came to the United States in 2015 when she was 15 years old, moving with her mom and four siblings to Tampa Bay, Florida, where her father was living at the time. She had plans to go to South Florida University, but that changed when her family moved to Chicago, and she decided instead to join the Air Force.

“My dream is to become a surgeon one day and the Air Force offered me an education,” she said. “I am proud to serve in a country that has given me and my family opportunities to succeed. I have become the role model for my siblings and the pride of my parents.”

Cde Baca came to the 75th Medical Group with a healthy resume. In 2021, in just her second year in the Air Force, she garnered the Air Force Combat Command Pharmacy Technician of the Year award.

“This award brought me a huge sense of satisfaction, pride, and happiness as it was the reflection of hard work and dedication,” she said. “As a brand-new Airman, this achievement showed me that leaders saw potential in me to be a leader within my career field, make changes, and do great things. It was the beginning of what so far has been a successful career.”

Cde Baca said recognizing and celebrating women’s contributions during Women’s History Month is an opportunity to expand motivation, inspire others and teach future generations. She admires many women but finds Dr. Antonia Novello especially inspiring. Novella was the first woman and first Latina to become Surgeon General of the United States.

“I found her inspiring because like me, she came from somewhere else to continue to pursue higher education,” she said. “She has shown women that higher positions can be held through hard work and dedication.”

She said the strongest advice she can give to other women is to pursue their dreams.

“Sometimes we let other people’s opinions influence our decisions and that is a mistake,” Cde Baca said. “Women are tough! The uniform has shown me that I am more capable of what I ever imagined; capable of being a leader, a wife, a future mom, and an that I can make change.”

Outside of her duty hours, she loves traveling, spending time with her family and taking care of her Great Dane, which she calls her “little house pony.”  She also enjoys watching movies and has an impressive collection of LEGO flowers.