Tripler says goodbye to Col. Bill Soliz

By Amelia DicksonMay 19, 2023

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Col. Bill A. Soliz relinquished command of Tripler Army Medical Center during a ceremony at the hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii on May 19, 2023. Brig. Gen. Edward H. Bailey, Medical Readiness Command, Pacific commander, presided over the ceremony.

Soliz assumed command of Tripler last year, and leaves the position to lead Medical Readiness Command, Pacific. Col. Cory Plowden, commander of the Desmond Doss Health Clinic at Schofield Barracks, will serve as interim commander of Tripler until the arrival of a permanent commander in coming months.

During the ceremony, Bailey thanked Soliz for his work leading Tripler. He said that Soliz and Command Sgt. Maj. John “Mike” Contreras built a culture of learning, training and excellence.

“It’s not just the quality of the training … It’s the desire to do well, it’s the culture of the institution that supports soldiers who want to excel,” Bailey said. “Bill, a lot happened on your watch, but the culture change will be your legacy.”

In his remarks, Soliz reflected on his time at the hospital, describing it as one of the best years of his life.”

“It was the best year because of all of you, our people,” Soliz said. “The greatest health readiness platform ever formed. The military and civilian staff the live and work inside of these pink walls every day, 24 hours a day, because of the care, compassion, determination, and resilience you all possess and demonstrate daily.”

Soliz enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1987 as a combat medic. He commissioned in 1998 after attending the Army’s Physician Assistant Training Program at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. His combat operations include Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm, Operation Provide Comfort, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and joint special operations contingencies worldwide.

Tripler supports 264,000 active duty and retired military personnel, their families, and veteran beneficiaries. In addition, the referral population includes 171,000 military personnel, family members, veteran beneficiaries, residents of nine U.S. affiliated jurisdictions and forward-deployed forces in more than 40 countries throughout the Pacific.