Pete’s wife of 55 years, Judi, passed away on February 8th, 2017 from an aggressive auto-immune disease.
Judi was born in Washington, D.C., the only child of Dorothy and Leroy Wright. She graduated from the University of Maryland in 1960 with a degree in textile design. Two years later, she married her college sweetheart, Peter Miller Dawkins, USMA class of 1959, at West Point’s Cadet Chapel.
As a military wife, Judi moved her family around the country 41 times, including stops at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where she gave birth to her first child, Sean, and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where her daughter, Noël, was born.
No matter where she called home, Judi was in constant motion, balancing family life with an array of exciting jobs, including time as a licensed real estate agent in five states, a ski instructor at Round Top Mountain in Pennsylvania, a skipper and sailing instructor off the coast of Monterrey, California, and as a research assistant at the Stanford Hopkins Marine Station.
When there was an opportunity to make a difference, she seized it. As an Army wife, she became the head of the Officers’ Wives Club and once spent three months learning Spanish in preparation to host the wives of military members from the Conference of American Armies (including South, North and Central America). Once her husband, Pete, retired after 24 years in the military, Judi dedicated herself to philanthropic causes in the communities around her.
She was a staunch supporter of the 52nd Street Project in New York City, served over 20 years as a trustee on the board of the Monmouth Medical Center in New Jersey, and Chaired the Monmouth Medical Center Foundation’s board from 2000 to 2003 where she helped launch the Redefining Health Care Capital Campaign, which included oversight of $15 million in upgrades for the Leon Hess Cancer Center and the expansion of the Jacqueline M. Wilentz Comprehensive Breast Center.
In 2013, Judi was honored with the New Jersey Hospital Association Hospital and Healthcare System Trustee of Year Award. The following year she was awarded the Community Leadership Award at Monmouth Medical Center’s 42nd Annual Crystal Ball.
Today, in her memory, the Judith W. Dawkins Women’s Health Program at the Monmouth Medical Center continues Judi’s work as a leading women’s health advocate in Monmouth County. The program provides a full spectrum of comprehensive care for women through Monmouth Medical Center’s team of leading physicians, surgeons and healthcare professionals, including inter-disciplinary medical specialty and subspecialty services
Judi is survived by Pete; their daughter, Noël, son-in-law, Joe, daughter-in-law, Winkie; and six grandchildren, Fallon, Finn, Lennan, Miller, Reilly and Caroline.