October 25 - 27, 2021


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Be a Part of the Solution

Thank you for joining us for the Eighth Annual Warrior Community Integration Symposium during October 25-27, 2021. You can now review any sessions you may have missed by logging in to the Symposiums digital platform using the button below.


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Gary Sinise.png

Please join us in recognizing Gary Sinise as the recipient of the 2021 Leo K. Thorsness Leadership Award. Gary and the Gary Sinise Foundation continue to lead by example in their service to our nation's veterans and their families. Register for the Warrior Community Integration Symposium and tune in Tuesday, Oct. 26 at 3 pm/ET for the award presentation followed by a fireside chat between Gary Sinise and Jon Scott of the FOX Report.


All sessions are Eastern Time and subject to change

Monday, October 25

Corporate Veteran Initiative Pre-Conference Workshop in partnership with JP Morgan Chase & Co

11:00 11:10am
Opening Remarks

  • Meg O’Grady, National Veterans Employment Manager, U.S. Department of Labor


11:10 – 12:00pm

Session A: Panel: Growing Your Veteran Talent Pipeline

  • Moderated by Joshua Wilson, Corporate Relationship Manager, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • James Beamesderfer, Vice President, Veterans Initiatives, Prudential

  • Christopher Isola, Head, Veterans Affairs, UBS Financial Services Inc.

  • John Perez, Head, Military & Veterans Affairs, Johnson & Johnson

  • Laura Schmiegel, Head of Military and Veteran Affairs, Booz Allen Hamilton


12:00  12:50pm

Session B: Concurrent Roundtables: Best Practices for Empowering Veterans in the Workplace

  • Taking Proactive Measures In Support of Veteran and Military Spouse Transition

    • Hosted by Lindsey Streeter, SVP Global Military Affairs, Bank of America

    • Aaron Polsgrove, Senior Vice President, D&I Executive, Bank of America

    • Melanie Hughes, Senior Applications Engineer, Bank of America

  • Women Veterans, Untapped Talent Pool

    • Hosted by Sarah Roberts, Head of Military and Veterans Programs, LinkedIn

  • Creating A Culture of Military Awareness & Appreciation

    • Hosted by Charles Bunch, Military Affairs Relationship Director, USAA

    • Mike Caraballo, Wells Fargo

    • Tiffany Daugherty, Johnson & Johnson

    • Tommy Jones, Verizon

  • Veteran Entrepreneurship: How do we get there from here?

    • Hosted by Meg Hendricks, Head of Military and Veteran Affairs, Fiserv

    • Hosted by Misty Stutsman Fox, Director, Entrepreneurship & Small Business, IVMF

  • Creating A Best in Class Military & Veterans Program

    • Hosted by Abraham Blocker, JPMC Military & Veterans Affairs and Veterans Job Mission Program Manager

    • Ariann Lane, JPMC Military & Veterans Affairs & Veterans Job Mission – Asst. Program Manager

    • Anthony Chiocchi, Veteran Talent Lead for JPMC Military Pathways


12:50  1:00pm

Closing Remarks

  • Jim Lorraine, President & CEO, America’s Warrior Partnership

Community Integration Pre-Conference Workshop in partnership with IVMF 

1:00  1:10pm

Opening Remarks

  • CDR Kinzie Lee, Lead, Strategic Partnerships, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention / National Center for Injury Prevention and Control


1:10 – 2:00pm

Session C: Panel: Navigating the Future of Community-Based Services, Resources, and Care

  • Moderated by Dr. Julia Carboni, Associate Professor, Syracuse University Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs

  • Anne Allen, Program Officer, The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation

  • Dr. Michelle Shumate, Founder and Director, Network for Nonprofit and Social Impact at Northwestern University

  • Regina Williams, Vice President of Community Investment and Regional Director of United Way of Tarrant County-Arlington

2:00  2:50pm

Session D: Concurrent Roundtables: Helpful Practices for Every Stage of Community Integration Work

  • Charlie Hall, President, Upstate Warrior Solution

  • Scott Johnson, President/CEO, The Warrior Alliance, Inc.

  • Dwayne Wells, Care Coordinator, Veterans Bridge Home | Diane Weekley, Charlotte Network Director, Veterans Bridge Home | Jessica Salinas, Sandhills Community Coordinator, Veterans Bridge Home

  • Christy Kenady, Director, ServingTogether | Jason Marshall, Program Manager, ServingTogether

  • Alyssa Vasquez, Director of Community Integration, Veterans One-stop Center of WNY

  • Ke’Airah Parker, Program Manager SyracuseServes, IVMF | Lisa Murray, Program Manager, IVMF

2:50  3:50pm

Session E: Keynote: Promoting Connectedness to Combat Suicide Locally

  • Joe Geraci, Co-Director Transitioning Servicemember/Veteran and Suicide Prevention (TASC), VA VISN 2 MIRECC & VA VISN 17

3:50  4:00pm

Closing Remarks

  • Kaitlin Cashwell, Director of Community Integration, America's Warrior Partnership

Tuesday, October 26

11:00 – 11:10am

Welcome Message/Opening Remarks

  • Jim Lorraine, President & CEO of America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Kate Migliaro, Board of Director Chair, America’s Warrior Partnership | Principal, Talent Management and Organizational Effectiveness, Apollo Global Management


11:10 – 11:20am

Message from Capitol Hill

  • Honorable Patrick Murphy, Taking The Hill, LLC

11:20  12:00pm

General Session I: Overcoming Obstacles

  • General Lori Robinson, Commander, NORAD (May 2016 - May 2018), Commander, US NORTHCOM, Commander, Pacific Air Forces (Oct 2014 – May 2016)

12:00 – 12:10pm 

Break / Networking

12:10 1:00pm 

Concurrent Breakout Sessions


  • Empowered Veterans: Enhancing Veteran Student Success in Higher Education

    • Moderated by Dr. Natesha Smith-Isabell, Deputy Director for Education and Operations, TASC

    • Dr. Abby Kinch, Vice President of Programs and Services, Student Veterans of America

    • Ryan Pavel, CEO, Warrior-Scholar Project

    • Robert Murphy, Director of Veteran and Military Student Success and the Center for Student Achievement, USC Aiken

  • Empowered Families: Who Cares?: Challenging the Status Quo on Caregiving

    • Moderated by Kerry Irvin, External Relations & Partnership Director, Camp Corral

    • Charo Bates, Applied Research & Social Impact DEPLOY Fellow, Blue Star Families

    • Tina Atherall, CEO, PsychArmor

    • Hannah Hutler-Boyd, Chief Impact Officer, Camp Corral

    • Dr. Sally Zoll Ed.D., CEO, United Through Reading

    • Isabella Taft, Daughter and Caregiver of a Former Navy Corpsman

  • Empowered Communities: Increasing Support to Tribal Communities

    • Moderated by Shya Ellis-Flint, Community Integration Manager, America's Warrior Partnership

    • Dr. Asha Ivey-Stephenson Ph.D., MA, Behavioral Scientist and Epidemiologist, Suicide Prevention Team, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control

    • Leann Shaffer, Community Investor, The Boeing Company

    • Verdie Bowen Sr, Director, Alaska Office of Veterans Affairs

  • Empowered Organizations: Leading Through Crisis 

    • Moderated by Cheree Tham, LCSW, Vice President of Programs and Initiatives, America’s Warrior Partnership

    • Bryan Escobedo, Systems Director (National), Combined Arms

    • Inann Johns, Program Lead, Diné Naazbaa' Partnership

    • Jade Smith, Veterans Outreach Supervisor, Tierney Center for Veteran Services at Goodwill Orange County

    • Meg Hersman Storer, Chief of Staff, 211 San Diego

  • Empowered Companies: Public-Private Collaboration to Combat Veteran Under- and Unemployment

    • Moderated by Dan Goldenberg, Executive Director, Call of Duty Endowment

    • Dr. Nate Ainspan, Senior Research Psychologist, Department of Defense

    • Ivan Denton, Director of National Programs, DOL Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS)

    • Lori Adams, Director of Veterans Policy, National Association of State Workforce Agencies

1:10 – 2:00pm 

Lunch and Learn: Operation Deep Dive Key Findings

  • Dr. Eric Caine, Professor of Psychiatry, Emeritus, and Co-Director, Center for the Study and Prevention of Suicide, University of Rochester Medical Center

  • Dr. Karl Hamner, Director for the Office of Evaluation, The University of Alabama

  • Dr. Phillip Smith, Professor, University of South Alabama 

  • Dr. Matt Hudnall, Deputy Director at Institute of Data & Analytics (IDA), The University of Alabama

2:00  2:50pm  

Concurrent Roundtable Sessions: Innovations in Suicide Prevention

  • Connecting Veterans Through Social and Physical Activity During the Covid-19 Pandemic Team RWB’s Approach to Virtual Engagement

    • Hosted by Dr. Mary Patterson, Grants Manager, Team Red, White, & Blue​

  • The Spartan Leadership Program: Taking a Proactive and Strengths-based Approach to the Mental Wellbeing of Veterans and Survivors

    • Dr. Camille Minor EdD, Membership Manager, Travis Manion Foundation​

  • Evaluation Capacity and Beyond: Supporting Veteran Serving Organizations for Suicide Prevention

    • Hosted by Dr. Melissa Brown, Behavioral Scientist, CDC NCIPC​

  • Balancing the Human Element and Technology

    • Hosted by Dannielle Pope, Director, Innovative Technology, America's Warrior Partnership​

    • Danielle Krakora, Co-Founder & CEO, Ibility, LLC

    • Steve Cundy, President & CEO, Tuatara

  • The Family Dynamics of Post-Traumatic Stress

    • Hosted by Freddie Batista, Director of Marketing 10 CAN Inc.

2:50  3:00pm

Break / Networking

3:00 – 4:00pm

Leo Award Presentation & General Session II:  Fireside Chat

  • Jon Scott, Anchor | FOX Report, FOX News​

  • Gary Sinise, Founder, President, Chairman, Gary Sinise Foundation

4:0 4:10pm

Break / Networking

4:10 – 4:50pm

General Session III: Panel: Investigating an Upstream Approach to Suicide Prevention

  • Introduced by Catharine Grimes, Director of Corporate Philanthropy, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation

  • Moderated by Jim Lorraine, President and CEO, America's Warrior Partnership

  • Bonnie Carroll, President and Founder, TAPS

  • Dr. Deb Stone ScD, MSW, MPH, Lead Behavioral Scientist, Division of Injury Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control

  • James Hartsell, Executive Director, Florida Department of Veterans Affairs

4:50 – 5:30pm

General Session IV: Panel: View from the Hill – A Policy Discussion

  • Introduced by Jim Lorraine, President & CEO, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Moderated by Darrell Owens, Director of Government Relations, America's Warrior Partnership

  • Lindsay Dearing, Professional Staff Member (PSM), U.S. Senate

  • Faye Fernandes, Counsel, Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs

  • Christine Hill, Republican Health Staff Director, Subcommittee on Health, House Committee on Veterans Affairs

  • Shauna Rust, Professional Staff Member, Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs

5:30 – 5:40pm 

Closing Remarks

  • Darrell Owens, Director of Government Relations, America's Warrior Partnership

Wednesday, October 27

11:00 – 11:10am

Opening Remarks

  • Bill Weber, Board of Directors Vice-Chair, America’s Warrior Partnership | Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, First Light Acquisition Group


11:10 – 12:00pm 

General Session V: Keynote: Address from the Department of Veterans Affairs

  • John W. Boerstler, Chief Veterans Experience Officer, Veterans Experience Office​

12:00 – 12:10pm

Break / Networking

12:10 – 1:00pm

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

  • Empowered Veterans: Working Together to Improve Veterans Lives

    • Hosted by Jeff Hall, National Employment Director, DAV (Disabled American Veterans)

  • Empowered Families: More Than Supporting Role- Including Families and Caregivers in the Rehab and Recovery of Their Service Member or Veteran

    • Moderated by Melissa Comeau, Director, Military and Veteran Caregiver Network, American Red Cross

    • Sara Aumuller, Senior Case Manager, Semper Fi & America’s Fund

    • MAJ Alicia Chisholm LCSW, Policy and Program Integration (P2I) Branch Chief, NGB J1 WRF

    • Allison Tebbe, Headway Program Director, Bastion Community of Resilience

    • Drew Teer Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow, Emory Healthcare Veterans Program

  • Empowered Communities: Volunteering: A Proven Means of Expanding Corporate Engagement and Bridging Divides

    • Moderated by Kari McDonough, President and Co-Founder, Vets Community Connections

    • James C. Johnson, CEO, Operation Gratitude

    • Mary Beth Bruggeman, President, The Mission Continues

    • Matt Kress, Senior Manager, US Community Impact, Starbucks

    • Kevin Schmiegel, Founder and President, KMS Strategies LLC

    • Bryan Tucker, Vice President, Corporate Communications, CSX

  • Empowered Organizations: Collaborative Approaches to Community Integration

    • Moderated by Jeanette Gilles, Deputy Director of Community Integration, America's Warrior Partnership

    • Nichole Coleman, President, NACVSO- National Association of County Veterans Service Officers

    • Mike Eastman, Executive Director, The ETS Sponsorship Program

    • Lisa Murray, Program Manager, Institute for Veterans and Military Families

    • Molly Giles, Transitions Lead, Southeast Region, USO

  • Empowered Companies: Optimizing Employee Wellbeing: Employer Strategies and the Value of Community Partnerships

    • Moderated by Hisako Sonethavilay, Senior Advisor for Research & Innovation, US Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Hiring Our Heroes

    • Elizabeth O’Brien, CEO, Freedom Learning Group

    • Matthew Amidon, Director- Military Service Initiative, George W. Bush Institute

    • Dr. Pamela Corson, Vice President, Health & Wellness, Prudential

1:10 – 2:00pm

Lunch and Learn: 10 Year Review: The Impact of AWP Community Integration Approach

  • Moderated by Jon Scott, Anchor, FOX Report, FOX News

  • Jim Lorraine, President & CEO, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Cheree Tham, LCSW, Vice President of Programs and Initiatives, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Kaitlin Cashwell, Director of Community Integration, America’s Warrior Partnership


2:00  2:50pm

Concurrent Roundtable Sessions: Trending in the Veteran Space

  • Boost the Impact of Your Mission by Embracing New Innovations

    • Hosted by Shawn Olds, CEO, boodleAI

  • Exploring the Benefits of the VA’s Whole Health Model

    • Hosted by Ronald Rutherford, Lead, Whole Health Outreach, VA Office of Patient-Centered Care & Cultural Transformation

    • Christian DiMercurio, Field Implementation Team Lead, VA Office of Patient Centered Care & Cultural Transformation

  • The Veteran Community During the COVID-19 Pandemic

    • Hosted by Nathalie Grogan, Research Assistant, Military, Veterans and Society Program, Center for a New American Security (CNAS)

    • Cody Kennedy, Research Intern, Center for a New American Security (CNAS)

  • Engagement Strategies in the Pandemic Environment

    • Hosted by Coleman Brooks, Regional Alumni Director, Wounded Warrior Project

    • Chris Kalantzis, Project Odyssey Director, Wounded Warrior Project

    • Natalie Wooley, Outreach Specialist, Wounded Warrior Project

    • Angela Hemmen, Physical Health & Wellness/Adaptive Sports Regional Director, Wounded Warrior Project

  • Peer Support – Is It All The Same

    • Hosted by Major General Mark Graham, Executive Director Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care & Vets4Warriors​

    • Sean O’Brien, LCSW, Mental Health Specialist, Vets4Warriors

  • Turning Medics/Hospital Corpsmen into Civilian Healthcare Assets in Your State

    • Hosted by Dan Goldenberg, Executive Director, Call of Duty Endowment

2:50 – 3:00pm

Break / Networking

3:00 – 4:00pm

General Session VI: The Warrior Journey by The Wounded Warrior Project

  • Introduced by Jim Lorraine, President & CEO, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Jennifer Silva, Chief Program Officer

  • Tracy Farrell, Vice President of Connection & Wellness

  • Tom Kastner, Vice President of Financial Wellness

  • Erin Fletcher, Warrior Care Network Director

  • Nicole Chisolm, Impact Evaluation & Warrior Research Director

4:00 – 4:50pm

General Session VII: Panel: Veterans in Politics: A Unique Perspective of Service in Congress

  • Introduced by Jim Lorraine, President & CEO, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Moderated by Darrell Owens, Director of Government Relations, America's Warrior Partnership

  • Rep. Seth Moulton, (D-MA)

  • Rep. Mike Waltz (R-FL)

4:50 – 5:30pm

General Session VIII: Panel: Addressing the Epidemic of Invisible Wounds

  • Introduced by Jim Lorraine, President & CEO, America’s Warrior Partnership

  • Moderated by Marcus Ruzek, Senior Program Director, The Marcus Foundation

  • Jackie Breitenstein, Program Manager, Shepherd Center SHARE Military Initiative

  • Josh Goldberg, Executive Director, Boulder Crest Institute for Posttraumatic Growth

  • Mike Thirtle, Chief Executive Officer, Gary Sinise Foundation


4:30 – 5:40pm

Closing Remarks

  • Jim Lorraine, President and CEO, America's Warrior Partnership


The Symposium is an industry-leading event that empowers those who serve veterans by fostering collaboration and enhancing service to veterans and their families in communities across America. Hundreds of veteran-serving professionals gather to share best practices, hear from inspiring and influential speakers, and learn about resources available from exhibitors and attendees in order to empower the veterans and their families in their care. 












An Upstream Approach to Suicide Prevention and Veteran Empowerment 


Introduction to the CDC Framework: Adopting a Culture of Evaluation