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I am a Veteran, a Military Spouse, a Founder & CEO, an advocate, a mom, and a volunteer. From humble beginnings in Dry Ridge, Kentucky, as a young high school graduate, I enlisted in the United States Army in 2003. Working as an Information and Technology Specialist, I started my six-year active duty career in South Korea.
During that time, I became a wife and a mother before leaving active duty service in 2009 (to focus on my family), I then completed a year in the Kentucky & Tennessee National Guard.
Yet, my service to America’s Military did not end when I took my uniform off for the last time. It was just beginning. Like many Veterans and Military Spouses, my professional journey has been anything but traditional. I have taken on a variety of roles since transitioning to civilian life. Giving back to my community has been a central focus of my professional journey, especially with respect to my fellow Veterans and Military Spouses.
In 2017, I officially launched Empower Employ, a company focused on building training programs dedicated exclusively to Transitioning Service Members, Veterans, and Military Spouses, and the companies that want to hire them. Unfortunately, like many entrepreneurial veterans, I faced tremendous challenges and setbacks.
Within 7 months of launching, my immediate-family structure changed, and Empower Employ experienced a significant financial loss due to the actions of an ex-business partner, distraught I made the difficult decision to shut Empower Employ’s doors for 4 long years.
Despite my setbacks, my dedication to the Military community did not diminish. In 2020 I got remarried. My platform as a veteran and Military spouse advocate only continued to grow.
The day before the NNY360’s 20 Under 40 photoshoot my brother, Jake, unexpectedly passed away. And I was a mess. Grief will make you re-evaluate your purpose in life, encouraged by my peers and mentors.
I decided in 2021 to re-launch Empower Employ. The issues with connecting employers to military-community talent I identified 4 years earlier still existed; since Empower Employ had shuttered, I felt that it was time for me to step up to meet that need. But this time my focus is on training prospective employers on not only how to hire veterans and Military Spouses, but on the value that the talent can bring to organizations, as well as how to transform organizational culture to include and support Military hires.
Inspired by my discriminatory experience years earlier, I realized that I could build the best technology in the world, but unless companies were willing to educate themselves on the Military community, the existing gap would remain. With this renewed focus, I officially relaunched Empower Employ in June 2021, during a pcs move cross-country from NY to Hawaii. It’s been under a year as of today and I am not in debt, profitable as a business, and 100% Female, Veteran & Military Spouse owned. Without a single investor. I've gotten creative in finding startup funds! (Happy to share the secret!) I have 17 corporate partners and have placed 80+ Spouses and Veterans in roles this year.
I am extremely proud of Empower Employ, its former team members, and its future. We have big plans and no plans of slowing down.
If you are a company looking to source, hire, and retain military talent, we have solutions for you.
If you are a Veteran or Military Spouse looking for your next career move,
you are why Empower Employ exists. We have your back.
Training Program delivered
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