NEWS, SPORTS, COMMENTARY, POLITICS for Gloucester City and the Surrounding Areas of South Jersey and Philadelphia

Kevin Wiatr, 55, of Haddon Heights
Christine Girtain, of Toms River HS, NJ Teacher of the Year

Lawnside Historical Society Salutes West Point Graduate Jasmine Walker Motupalli


LAWNSIDE, New Jersey (Nov. 1, 2022) -- Jasmine Walker Motupalli is the first and only Lawnside resident appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The 2002 alumna of Haddon Heights High School was commissioned a second lieutenant when she graduated from the Academy in 2006 with a B.S. in operations research.

She will talk about her West Point experience, Lawnside and her Army career Thursday, Nov. 10, at 7 p.m. via Zoom. To attend this pre-Veterans Day event, guests must register in advance at

Among her accomplishments, Major Motupalli commanded combat units in Iraq and Afghanistan and worked in Army Intelligence at the Pentagon.

Reflecting on her career, she wrote: “I have my father to thank for everything. . . He was the first to encourage my obstinate character. He said that I would become what I wanted, not despite, but thanks to the power of who I am—an African American, a woman, a human, a fighter, a leader, and a writer.”

She received the prestigious General Douglas MacArthur Leadership Award. Her other honors include the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters), Army Achievement Medal and Iraq and Afghanistan Campaign Medals.

She returned to her alma mater as assistant professor of Systems Engineering and also worked as associate director of its Center for Leadership in Diversity and STEM. As a volunteer, she serves on the board of the Minority Business Advisory Council of Denver, the board of the Colorado Department of Veterans and Military Affairs and has worked on the problem of homelessness among veterans.

Major Motupalli is employed as director of customer experience, data and insights for Gusto, a Denver-based software firm.

The Lawnside Historical Society is a non-profit, tax exempt membership organization that promotes the history and heritage of Lawnside, N.J. It is supported by the Camden County Cultural and Heritage Commission, the official history agency of the New Jersey Historical Commission, the New Jersey Cultural Trust, the New Jersey Historic Trust. The Society operates the Peter Mott House Underground Railroad Museum, which is being prepared to reopen to the public for regularly scheduled tours.