Experience With an Unqualified Resignation Request by an Army Reserve Medical Corps Officer
Effective on September 1, 2011, I finally obtained my honorable discharge from the U.S. Army Reserves. I had been trying to resign my commission as a medical officer in the Army Reserves since 2006 without success. My efforts to do so were repeatedly thwarted by a bureaucracy that, when not openly hostile, was completely indifferent. In addition, I was hampered by an understanding of all things 'Army' that was minimal at best. Even after the expiration of my service obligation in 2008, I was unable to get the Army to advance my resignation request. Occasionally I would come across someone who actually seemed as if they wanted to help, but it never amounted to anything beyond a sympathetic ear. Navigating the endless maze of commands with any consistency was next to impossible for me given my demanding position as an attending Anesthesiologist in a very busy academic medical center. Then, in March 2011, I received orders to report for Soldier Readiness Processing along with a letter threatening separation for non-participation. It was at that point I realized I had to get help. To my great good fortune, Bill Meili was recommended to me.
Bill analyzed my situation, advised a plan of attack, and then executed that plan flawlessly to secure my Honorable Discharge. The level of communication was amazing. At no time did I ever have to wonder what was happening with my case as a day rarely passed that I did not receive at least one text, email or phone call with an update.
Within days of Bill taking my case, my orders were cancelled. Within just a few weeks, he accomplished something I hadn't been able to do on my own in 5 years - I was scheduled for exit counseling with my commander. During my exit counseling, I was told that it would take a minimum of six months for my discharge. I was also told that if I came up for deployment before final approval of my resignation, it would be shelved until 12 months after my return. Given the obstructionist tactics I'd dealt with previously, my spirits sunk on hearing this. Bill, however, seemed invigorated by the challenge. He developed and maintained relationships with people within the chain of command which ensured my resignation packet moved quickly from one stage to the next. As my packet moved up to the higher levels of command, he was there to hand deliver it to the appropriate person and obtain the requisite signature. As a direct result of his supreme dedication and intimate knowledge of 'all things Army,' I had my Honorable Discharge in hand barely 5 months after the day I first consulted him.
During those five months, I came to look upon Bill Meili not only as my attorney and representative, but as a friend who was as invested in a favorable outcome as I was. His infectious confidence, humor and personal interest in my life apart from my Army situation kept me going. I am eternally grateful for his help.
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I contacted Col. Meili as a fellow practitioner to gain some context and perspective on a pretty complex set of issues. Because I practice in a different field of law, Col. Meili's extensive expertise was invaluable and he was more than generous with his time. A skilled and dedicated professional who cares deeply about obtaining the best possible outcome for his clients, Bill's a leader in this field.
- Steffen Chapin
After an exhaustive search of military attorneys, I came across the name of Bill Meili. From my first email exchange and telephone call, I knew that Bill was the right person to handle my case. I had discussed my unique circumstance with a handful of other attorneys who felt it may be too difficult to achieve the outcome that I was seeking - but Bill was interested in me and my case, and wholeheartedly believed that we had the ball in our court. I could tell that Bill cared about me as a person and soldier, not just viewing me as a paycheck.
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