Today's American Veteran is presented by the Coalition to Salute America's Heroes The show is hosted by Emmy nominated actor and Patriot Jack Scalia.
The Coalition supports all Veterans and is a non partisan outreach.The views expressed by our guests are their own and may not reflect those of The Coalition to Salute America's Heroes
NACV has been around since 1968. The focus continues to be doing whatever is needed to advocate and serve the neediest of our veterans. The area that the Coalition to Salute America's heroe's has helped out with the most is in financing our Sheroes Project, the transitional housing project for female veterans with children here in DC's ward 7. The program is 85% completed and the NACV hopes to be able to open up the thirteen bedroom facility within the next month and a half.
Admiral James "Ace" Lyons, Jr. served in the U.S. Navy for thirty-six years, including as Commander in Chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet from 1985-87 , Senior U.S. Military Representative to the United Nations and Deputy Chief of Naval Operations.He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and has received post graduate degrees from the U.S. Naval War College and the U.S. National Defense University. He is currently the Chief Executive Officer of LION Associates LLC.
Matthew Pennington isU.S. Army (Ret.) and a Field Representative (East ) as well as National Spokesperson for The coalition to Salute Americas Heroes
Raised in both Maine and Texas, Matthew Pennington entered into military service at the age of seventeen; he had a robust career full of responsibility and leadership roles. Then at the age of twenty three he was struck down by an ambush IED team in Iraq. Losing his left leg and receiving severe damage to his right he was honorably retired and received the Purple Heart and the state of Maine Silver Star among various others.
Ken Falke is a 21-year combat veteran of the U.S. Navy and retired Master Chief Petty Officer and is highly respected around the world as an innovative and forward thinking thought leader on the subjects of wounded warrior care, military and veteran transition, counterterrorism and training and technology development.
Under Ken’s entrepreneurial direction and leadership as the Founder of his first company, A-T Solutions, the company is a recognized international expert and valuable global asset in combating the war on terrorism. At the forefront of providing training and consulting services in the Anti- Counter- Terrorism industry today, A-T Solutions was named four consecutive years to the Annual Inc. 500 fastest growing privately held companies in the U.S. Also recognized in Entrepreneur Magazines’ Hot 500 List, the Washington Technology “Fast 50”, Smart CEO’s “Future 50”, and the winner of the very prestigious Greater Washington Area Government Contractor Award in the category of companies $75M-$100M. In 2010, Ken was named as the Entrepreneur of the Year for the Fredericksburg, Virginia Regional Chamber of Commerce and selected as a finalist in the prestigious Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year program.
Ken is the current CEO of a Shoulder 2 Shoulder Inc., technology and multi-media company, in addition to the chairman and founder of Boulder Crest Retreat for Military and Veteran Wellness and the EOD Warrior Foundation.
Ken spends the majority of his time educating the public and private sectors on the issues surrounding the long-term care of our returning military personnel and their families from the last thirteen years of war. Ken has recently received the Loudoun County Sheriff and the VFW Post 2760 annual leadership awards.
Army Sergeant Mary Herrera of the 855th Military Police Company of the Arizona National Guard, was wounded on November 8, 2003 while on a routine mission to Fallujah from Ramadi. Sgt. Herrera the gunner of the lead vehicle was manning an M249 and a MK-19 when her element was ambushed by rifle fire, R.P.G.s, and I.E.D.s. Sgt. Herrera was immediately hit with one AK-47 round on her right bicep but was able to continue suppressing fire until she was hit was a second AK-47 round on her right firearm
After returning to the United States, Sgt. Herrera was awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received as a result of enemy and hostile action. Mary did not lose her arm due to extraordinary surgical efforts, and she received numerous surgeries, skin grafts and physical therapy at Brooke Army Medical Center in Fort Sam Houston, Texas.
According to Maj. Gen. David Rataczak, of the Arizona National Guard, Herrera is the bravest person he has ever met. He refers to Sgt. Herrera as a true example of a modern citizen-soldier who, despite being small in stature, is motivated, loyal, physically and mentally capable, disciplined and proficient, courageous and always a professional.
Due to her story and her example, the state of Arizona has passed a bill that will authorize tuition waiver scholarships to National Guardsmen and women who received a Purple Heart or were medically discharged due to injuries while serving in the military after Sept. 11, 2001. The bill is affectionately known as the Mary Herrera bill.
Sgt. Herrera re-joined the Coalition team in April 2013 as a Field Representative of the West. She resides with her daughter in Arizona and is dedicated to serving her fellow wounded service members through the mission of the Coalition.
Eddie Gomez is President of the Rocky Mountain Hyperbaric Association for Brain Injuries.Eddie shares the breakthroughs being made to help veterand cope with TBI. The mission of the Rocky Mountain Hyperbaric Association for Brain Injuries is to improve the quality of life for people suffering from brain injuries in the Rocky Mountain region by providing financial support and logistical assistance to individuals who are seeking rehabilitation through hyperbaric oxygen therapy and to promote education and understanding to the community regarding the benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy.
David W. Walker was elected President and Chief Executive Officer of the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes in July 2012. He has been a member of the Coalition’s Board of Directors since 2005, and has served as its Chairman since 2009.
Prior to joining the Coalition as its CEO, Mr. Walker served for nine years as Vice President of Association Services for the McLean, Va.-based National Glass Association (NGA), the largest and most influential trade association serving the architectural glass, automotive glass, and window and door industries. Prior to joining the NGA in 2005, he spent 20 years with the National Association of Manufacturers, eventually becoming its Vice President of Marketing and Member Services.
Mr. Walker is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame, and earned his MBA with highest honors from the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. He later graduated from the Innovative Leadership Executive Management Program at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Management.
Donny Daughenbaugh is USMC (ret.) and Vice President – Field Operations The Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes ‘Rebuilding lives and Restoring Hope for Troops Wounded in the War on Terror’ In October 2004 in Mahmoudiya, a city south of Baghdad, Donny was on a night foot patrol conducting vehicle searches. When a vehicle approached to be searched, the driver became irate and sped off. He engaged the squad of Marines with an AK-47 rifle and as Marines are taught, if you have no cover and concealment, make yourself a small target. As Cpl. Daughenbaugh was in the prone position flashes from the muzzle were aimed in his direction. One of those bullets hit Donny in the face, broke his jaw and severely damaged his nerves. His jaw was wired shut to heal the break and the bullet left in place, too close to vital nerves to be removed. Donny Was sent to Landstuhl Germany for weeks of stabilization and additional surgery until he was well enough to be sent home, to see his wife and daughter for the first time since his injury occurred.