Military veterans begin their next chapter with help from Boeing

Washington-based veterans and military partners benefit from new grants

January 25, 2018 in Our Community

Boeing’s commitment to supporting veterans and military families continues to grow, with the announcement of more than $600,000 in grants to veterans and transitioning military programs in Washington state that will be used during 2018. Nationally, Boeing announced nearly $8 million in veterans grant investments in 2017, representing a year-over-year increase of 50 percent from 2016.

One Washington recipient of Boeing grant funds is United Service Organizations (USO) Pathfinder, which is already putting its investment to work. The nonprofit organization -- the nation’s first comprehensive employment readiness program for U.S. military service members and their families making the transitions to civilian life -- recently hosted a resume and application workshop at Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) near Tacoma, Wash. More than a dozen Boeing employees with military backgrounds attended to share their experience and expertise, and to conduct mock interviews.

One attendee, Master Sergeant Laura Jones is wrapping up 22 years in the Air Force, and says she is deeply grateful programs like USO Pathfinder are available to help her transition into the civilian workforce. “This gives me practice,” Jones said. “I need to learn civilian terminology and how my skills translate outside the military.”

Boeing recently announced a $5 million, multi-year donation to help expand USO Pathfinder. The investment is a large-scale replication of the successful RP/6 model piloted in Washington state over the past several years with substantial Boeing support.

“Boeing’s investment in the military community here in the Pacific Northwest has made an incredible impact on the lives of thousands of service members and their families,” said Anne Sprute, USO senior vice president and founder of RP6. “It was Boeing’s initial investment in RallyPoint/6 four years ago that was foundational in building a best in class program. So much so, the initial investment is now being realized globally as a strategic business unit of the nation’s leading military service organization; the United Service Organizations (USO).”

Boeing’s support of veterans and military families is clear both inside and outside the company walls. Approximately 15 percent of Boeing’s Washington workforce identifies as veterans, and more than 1,000 employees are enrolled in the Boeing Employees Veterans Association (BEVA) in Washington.

“Boeing is deeply committed to supporting our veterans and military families who give so much to keep us safe,” said Gina Breukelman, senior manager of Boeing Global Engagement in the Puget Sound. “We also know they bring unique skills and strengths that are cultivated through their military experience to the workforce. We are to proud support them, and to call them our colleagues.”

Organizations in Washington receiving significant grants for their veterans and transitioning-military programs include:

  • USO Pathfinder -- Lakewood Transition Center (formerly RP6)
  • Goodwill of Olympics and Rainier Region -- Operation: GoodJobs program
  • Business Impact NW and Bunker Labs -- Build Your Network, Build Your Business program
  • US Chamber of Commerce – Hiring Our Heroes Corporate Fellowship Program at JBLM
  • Mission Continues --Tacoma Service Platoon

To learn more about Boeing’s commitment to military and veterans, and the careers available, please visit:

By Deborah Feldman