Captain Wilbur was commissioned in May 1990, through the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps at Miami University, where she completed a dual degree in Political Science and Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs. She completed Surface Warfare Officer School in San Diego, CA in October 1990 and reported to the USS MAUNA KEA (AE-22) as the first female officer. While onboard she served as the Auxiliary and Electrical Officer, Combat Information Center Officer, Administration/Legal Officer and Assistant Navigator. She earned her Surface Warfare Pin in 1992.
Late 1993, Captain Wilbur was hand selected to be the first woman onboard USS DETROIT (AOE 4) and was assigned as the Damage Control Assistant. While onboard, she was re-designated to the Training and Administration of Reserves (TAR) program.
In 1995, Captain Wilbur reported to shore duty as the Executive Officer of the Naval Reserve Center in Baltimore, MD overseeing 19 Reserve Units with 800+ Reserve personnel and an active-duty staff of 35. While in Baltimore, Captain Wilbur was also assigned as the US Navy Port Liaison Officer for the Port of Baltimore ensuring that the logistics/ceremonial arrangements were made for over 35 foreign and domestic ship visits. In late 1995, Captain Wilbur was recognized as the Naval Reserve Junior Officer of the Year (SWO).
She left Active Duty in 1997 and immediately affiliated with the Reserves. Her prior Navy Reserve assignments include: Executive Officer, CRUDES Detachment Cedar Rapids, IA; Training and Mobilization Officer, HARBOR DEFENSE COMMAND UNIT 201; Administration Department Head, NR MSC Detachment 107; Commanding Officer, NR Naval Embarked Advisory Team 210; N6 Department Head, NR CARRIER STRIKE GROUP TEN, Operations Officer-In-Charge, NR MSC HQ; N3/4 Current Operations Officer, NR Joint Staff South, J31 Assistant Chief Staff Officer, NR Joint Staff South, JFD Concepts Officer (J7), and CNSL ACW Unit Training Officer/Lead Facilitator. Her last Reserve Position was as COMNAVSURFPAC ACW Director. As an ACW Lead Facilitator, CAPT Wilbur has conducted over 45 workshops in both COMNAVSURFLANT and COMNAVSURFPAC.
Captain Wilbur was recalled to Active Duty in 2010 to serve as Team Chief at US Central Command Joint Operations Center. From there, she was sent to the Naval War College to earn her master’s degree in National Security and Strategic Studies. Upon Graduation, she was retained on Faculty at the Naval War College as the Assistant Director of the VADM Gravely Research Group to teach and research Ballistic Missile Defense and Undersea Warfare Operating Concepts. In September 2012, she was temporarily recalled to Active Duty to be an Assistant Professor of Behavioral Science as well as the Lead Instructor for the News Media Industry Study at National Defense University Eisenhower School where she also served as the Deputy Chair of the Strategic Leadership Department and the Dean of Students. She left Active Duty in October 2015. Most recently, CAPT Wilbur was recalled back to active duty at the National Defense University where she teaches Senior Leadership Foundation Course, National Security Policy, and Military Strategy. In addition, she is overseeing a 40-million-dollar renovation of Eisenhower Hall and is in charge of the Eisenhower School Centennial Celebration.
Captain Wilbur’s personal decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (6 awards), the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (3 awards), the Coast Guard Achievement Medal (O Device), Commandant of the Coast Guard’s Letter of Commendation as well as numerous service and campaign awards.
In civilian life, Captain Wilbur is an Organizational Design and Innovation Leader in the Federal Government. In the past, she has worked as an executive for General Electric Capital Company, Proctor and Gamble Company (Gillette), The Hartford Insurance Company, HP and Axiant LLC. She is a certified Six Sigma Master Black Belt, Organizational Design/Change Management expert/instructor and a Federal Coach. She currently is a PhD student at Salve Regina University in International Relations