In April 2023, Tim Bruton retired from the U.S. Air Force as a Chief Master Sergeant. His 30-year career continued a family legacy of military service.
His grandfather was assigned to the U.S. Army’s 101st Airborne Division during World War II and his dad was a U.S. Army paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne Division.
As we commemorate National Hire a Veteran Day, we’re shining a light on Tim and the importance of supporting veterans transitioning into the civilian workforce.
While in military service, Tim held various leadership positions that helped him gain experience in many areas including: professional development and organizational strategy, workforce leadership training, employee orientation and engagement, and rewards and recognition programs.
Those skills have definitely helped with his current role. Tim joined our CPS Energy team last month, working in People & Culture as a Program/Project Manager for Leadership Development.
We’re proud of our company’s support for veterans. And, we’re providing an opportunity for Tim to share more about landing his current position after retiring from the Air Force.
Question: What are some of the most valuable skills you learned in the military that have helped you transition into the civilian workforce?
Tim: The most valuable skills I learned are leadership, problem-solving, teamwork, the ability to handle stressful situations/resilience, and humility.
Question: What are some of the challenges veterans face when transitioning out of the military?
Tim: Each veteran is unique and so the challenges each faces, or encounters, can differ. One common challenge is a loss or lack of purpose, meaning they may now feel dissatisfied or unfulfilled after leaving the military. Also, they may have difficulty translating, or experience uncertainty, about how they can apply skills acquired in the military to the civilian sector.
I was fortunate to have great mentors, many who had transitioned to successful civilian careers. These mentors shared what to expect and what to prepare for, well before I retired. I feel that staying optimistic and maintaining self-confidence are key to a successful transition.
Question: Why is it important that companies support service members transitioning out of the military?
Tim: You’re potentially recruiting a positive difference-maker to your company. It’s also a way to extend your gratitude to veterans while creating opportunities to someone who defended our country and the Constitution. I was privileged to serve alongside some of the most brilliant, dedicated and hard-working people in uniform — veterans who will undoubtedly have an incredible impact at whatever company they work.
Question: How did you become interested in a career with CPS Energy?
Tim: I initially learned about internship opportunities at CPS Energy through Joint Base San Antonio (JBSA). I participated in the “Hiring Our Heroes” Corporate Fellowship Program, which falls under the Department of Defense SkillBridge program.
During the Corporate Fellowship, which lasted from January through March 2023, I was assigned to CPS Energy’s Talent Development team. My mentor was Patrick Hale, director of that area. I had the chance to participate in various workplace activities, such as helping design and launch a first-of-its-kind instructor course for the Power Generation team. I also toured many locations and met numerous leaders and individual contributors to gain perspectives on what they do and how they serve our customers and community. It was an amazing learning experience.
Question: You recently became a permanent employee with CPS Energy. Tell us about the role you’re serving in.
Tim: I started my CPS Energy journey on June 12. I am currently a Program/Project Manager in Leadership Development. I’m working on several initiatives with my fellow Leadership Development teammates and others at the company to build and enhance professional development programs. I’m also working to earn specialized certifications that will allow me to train and develop the CPS Energy team.
We’re honored to have Tim and the more than 300 other veterans working for CPS Energy. These selfless, dedicated service members bring valuable skills and talents that help us deliver reliable, resilient energy to San Antonio, fondly called Military City USA.
Thank you, Tim Bruton, for sharing your story with us on National Hire a Veteran Day.