Lisa Battaglia, spouse of USMC, senior enlisted advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently visited the Richmond office of Operation PAVE (Paving Access for Veterans Employment), a program that provides transitioning veterans with support for finding jobs, education opportunities and help with securing VA benefits.
Lisa Battaglia (left) visits the prosthetic lab at the Richmond VAMC April 29, 2014
The award-winning program is managed by Paralyzed Veterans of America (Paralyzed Veterans), but serves any veteran facing significant challenges to employment.
Mrs. Battaglia was joined by Immanuel Sutherland, senior specialist, community relations at Altria Client Solutions, a supporter of the Operation PAVE program. The group visited the PAVE office located in the Richmond VA Medical Center.
The delegation was invited to tour the Richmond PAVE office to see first-hand how PAVE helps veterans transition more smoothly from military duty or injury into civilian life. Mrs. Battaglia is now an ambassador of this year’s Paralyzed Veterans Golf Open (PVGO), taking place June 9, at Trump National Golf Club in Potomac Falls, Va. Over the past seven years, the tournament has raised more than $1.8 million for Operation PAVE.
“Recognizing that so many veterans could use additional support as they leave active duty, Mrs. Battaglia offered to help engage other senior military spouses in learning about PAVE,” said Jane Eakins, director of corporate development for Paralyzed Veterans of America.
Ms. Battaglia’s visit included a tour of the Richmond VA Medical Center, visiting its new polytrauma unit, assistive technology area, skilled rehab unit and prosthetics lab. The tour highlighted some of the state-of-the-art care offered at the Richmond VAMC from advanced prosthetics technology to the use of 3D printing to customize assistive technologies to each individual patient.
Ms. Battaglia and Operation PAVE leaders also met with Dr. Lance Goetz, chairman of the Predictive Outcome Model Over Time for Employment, or PrOMOTE, which partners with the PAVE program to help with job placement and training for a small group of individuals with severe disabilities.
Learn more about Operation PAVE
Learn more about the Paralyzed Veterans Golf Open
Brittany Ballenstedt is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in several publications, including Government Executive, National Journal, Technology Daily and NextGov.com.