Program connects Miami Valley veterans with civilian jobs

Published: Friday, November 10, 2017 @ 7:36 AM

If you value your freedom, thank a veteran. American freedom comes with a price that millions of military personnel and veterans have paid serving our country. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, there were about 22 million veterans living in the United States as of 2014. 

This Veterans Day Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley and some local businesses are doing more than just thanking veterans.  

Together with veteran support agencies in the Miami Valley and local employers, Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley has formed the Veterans and Employers Connection, a collaborative partnership founded in 2014 to assist with the successful employment of veterans in the civilian workforce. With a goal to place 5000 veterans in meaningful and gainful employment by 2020, The Connection is well on its way. 

“At the end of our inaugural year, we had 30 member employers on board and had helped place 103 veterans in jobs,” said Roger Baldridge, vice president of business services for Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley. 

Today, The Connection is 78 members strong and has successfully placed over 1600 veterans in jobs. 

“The military teaches veterans a lot of great skill sets that employers really want, such as a strong work ethic, the ability to work effectively as part of a team, and having a passion and dedication to achieving a mission,” said Lance Detrick, president of Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley. “However, we know that, for a variety of reasons, veterans sometimes struggle to successfully reenter the civilian workforce.” 

The Veterans and Employer Connection provides assistance with resumes and offers interview coaching and preparation for veterans seeking employment. An important part of this process is helping veterans translate military skills and language into the civilian work environment.  

Through the partnership, employers committed to hiring veterans have access to a pool of veterans with diverse skills.  

Larry Nash

Larry Nash knows the benefits of The Connection firsthand. A former Marine and field radio operator, Nash moved back to Dayton to take care of his ailing father and needed some support to get back into the workforce.  

With the help of The Connection, Nash landed a job as a janitor with Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley, cleaning buildings through a contract for the county.

“I’m most impressed with the closeness of employees,” Nash said about his current position. “It’s more like a work family, than a work opportunity.” 

Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley is no stranger to the benefits of providing meaningful employment locally to people in need. In fact, as part of its mission of helping people with disabilities and other needs to become independent, GESMV employs 586 people with disabilities and 83 veterans throughout a workforce that’s more than a thousand strong. 

The Connection honored Crown Equipment Corporation as member of the year for employing twice as many veterans as any other connection member.

Crown Equipment Corporation also knows that veterans make great employees. Worldwide, Crown employs over 600 veterans, 26 of whom are employed right here in the Miami Valley. The Connection honored Crown as member of the year for employing twice as many veterans as any other connection member.   

“We’ve had a lot of growth,” said Randy Niekamp, vice president of human resources for Crown Equipment Corporation, with regards to how they have been so successful with placing so many veterans in positions. “We’ve really had success transitioning well from military bases.”  

“Veterans make great employees,” he added. “They are dedicated, and they have great leadership and technical skills.” 

If you are a local employer looking to support veterans, consider becoming a member of The Connection. If you’ve never hired a veteran, you can learn more and receive support as you help a veteran get back to work after their service.  

The Veterans and Employers Connection provides free assistance to veterans in need of employment. Join GESMV, The Connection and their commitment to helping anyone who has officially worn the uniform, regardless of length of service, category of discharge or any other employment barrier.  

With your help, even more veterans can have access to services to help them get a job right here in your community when you donate securely online at

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Saturday’s highlights of the 2018 Vectren Dayton Air Show

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 9:00 AM
Updated: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 4:00 PM

Heritage Act - June 23, 2018

PHOTOS: Images from the Air Show

VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: F-22 Raptor takes over Dayton skiesCincinnati’s Redline Aerobatic TeamJet-powered WACO biplane |  Tuskegee Airmen P-51C MustangOracle biplane doesn’t believe in the laws of physics |

Saturday’s lineup of feature acts included: the Tuskegee Airmen, P-51 Mustang, U.S. Army Golden Knights, Vicky Benzing, B-17 Movie Memphis Belle, Redline, Sean Tucker, U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor, U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight, CareFlight dedication, Tora Tora Tora, Jet Waco and the U.S. Navy Blue Angels.

>> Blue Angels thrill crowd with performance

3:35 p.m. U.S. Navy Blue Angels

The iconic U.S. Navy Blue Angels fly six F/A-18 Hornet fighter jets in a tightly choreographed, high-energy demonstration. The F-18 generators of their aircraft are made by GE Aviation in Vandalia.



2:55 p.m. Jet Waco

The Jack Link’s Beef Jerky “Screamin’ Sasquatch” Jet Waco is a highly modified 1929 Taperwing Waco that can fly vertically and has a loud roar to please the crowds.

2:40 p.m. Tora, Tora, Tora

This is the dramatic recreation of the Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor.


2:30 p.m. CareFlight Dedication

CareFlight, the air-medical transport service, is celebrating 35 years of service by participating in the air show.

2:15 p.m. Heritage Flight

2 p.m. U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor

This is a rare appearance in Dayton of the world’s most formidable stealth fighter, which can reach supersonic airspeeds of Mach 1.5 without using the afterburner.

1:47 p.m. Sean Tucker

Sean Tucker, who flies the Oracle biplane, is one of the world’s best aviators, is recognized as one of the Living Legends of Flight. Did you know he learned to fly to conquer a fear of flying? He serves as chairman of the Young Eagles Program and works with at-risk children through the Every Kid Can Fly program. He also offers the Sean D. Tucker Young Eagles Essay contest for a chance to win a flight with him ahead of the air show.

1:30 p.m. Redline Airshows

The Cincinnati-based aerobatic team returns to the Dayton skies with their formation flying.

1:20 p.m. B-17 Movie Memphis Belle

The movie Memphis Belle commemorates the real B-17 Memphis Belle Flying Fortress World War II heavy bomber.

1 p.m.: Vicky Benzing

The accomplished pilot, skydiver, aerobatic performer and air racer brings her high-energy and action-packed routine to Dayton for the first time.


12:30 p.m.: U.S. Army Golden Knights

The Golden Knights paratroopers, formed in 1959, last appeared in Dayton in 2015. They thrill spectators with intricate canopy work along with their etreme-precision skydiving formations and landings.

PHOTOS: 2018 Vectren Dayton Air Show kicks off

12:24 p.m.: P-51C Red Tail Mustang “Tuskegee Airmen” - Watch Here

The aircraft inspires spectators in the air as well as on the ground.

Noon: Redline Tease

The Cincinnati-based aerobatic team gives a hint of its performance to come.


9 a.m.:

Gates are open for today’s 2018 Vectren Dayton Air Show.

The first acts take to the skies at noon and fly through 4:15 p.m.

Airshow: Oracle acrobatic biplane doesn't believe in the laws of physics

Today’s lineup of feature flying acts include: the Tuskegee Airmen, P-51 Mustang, U.S. Army Golden Knights, Vicky Benzing, B-17 Movie Memphis Belle, Redline, Sean Tucker, U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor, U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight, CareFlight dedication, Tora Tora Tora, Jet Waco and the U.S. Navy Blue Angels.

Gates close at 6 p.m., and will be open again from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.

>> Air show forecast: Warm with chance for showers, storms

>> RTA offers express shuttle service to Vectren Dayton Air Show

>> How to avoid traffic and parking headaches at this weekend’s Vectren Dayton Air Show

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Here’s how to avoid a major two-day road closure in Huber Heights

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 3:09 PM


A major thoroughfare in Huber Heights will be closed for two days.

Bellfontaine Road will be closed Monday and Tuesday between Chambersburg Road and Taylorsville Road for instillation of a new water main across the roadway, according to the city.

There will be no local through access, but there will be local access to homes and businesses in the area, primarily from the Taylorsville Road side, said Clerk of Council Anthony Rodgers.

Traffic will be detoured to Brandt Pike.

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Police are asking for your help finding missing endangered teen in Springboro

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 3:56 PM

Police are seeking the public’s  help to find a missing endangered teen. 

>>Amber Alert canceled after 2 Urbana boys found safe

Frista Gibbons, 15, was last seen around 2:30 p.m. Friday leaving her home on foot, according to the Springboro Police Department.

Gibbons is stands 5 feet 7 inches, weighs 100 pounds, has short brown hair and hazel eyes.

She was last seen wearing a light blue zip-up hoodie with a knee length leopard-print skirt. She was carrying a black backpack, according to a release.

Police said Gibbons may be with her juvenile boyfriend from Camden, Ohio. 

Anyone with information is urged to call the Springboro Police Department at 937-748-0611.

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RTA offers express shuttle service to Dayton Air Show

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 1:50 AM

The Greater Dayton RTA will provide transport to the Vectren Dayton Air Show this weekend. 

Air conditioned buses will run an express shuttle service on a continuous loop from the U.S. Air Force Museum parking lot and Wright Stop Plaza directly to the air show's main gate. 

>>Dayton Air Show forecast

The park-and-ride service will run from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Shuttles leave approximately every 10 minutes. 

Round-trip cost is $3 and free for children 5 and younger. Cash is the only payment method accepted. 

The regular fare structure applies from the downtown Wright Stop Plaza location. 

For more information, call 937-425-8300 or visit

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