33. Maureen Elias on the Value of Being Uncomfortable

July 13, 2022

33. Maureen Elias on the Value of Being Uncomfortable
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In this episode, Brock talks with Maureen Elias.

Maureen is former Army counterintelligence before receiving a medical discharge back in 2006. From there, Maureen stayed home to raise her three kids before receiving the call to go back to school. While pursuing her undergraduate and masters degrees, Maureen was involved in a variety of veterans organizations including Student Veterans of America, Vietnam Veterans of America, and High Ground Veterans Advocacy. Her involvement in these organizations and others brought her to the realization of her true calling which is advocating for vets at a higher, political level. Maureen is now the Deputy Chief of Staff at the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

We discuss the mental and physical challenges of receiving a medical discharge both while in the service and out. Maureen explains this breakdown in care for veterans who are also dependents, a population she falls into and is particularly passionate about. She talks about some of the resources available and problems that still need to be solved for this rather large group of people. We also talk about a long list of veteran resources and organizations looking to make an impact. 

You can reach out and follow along with Maureen on LinkedIn.

Student Veterans of America

Vietnam Veterans of America

High Ground Veterans Advocacy

Travis Manion Foundation

Armed Services Art Partnership


(04:10) - Receiving a medical discharge

(10:15) - Being stationed abroad and what that does for your worldview

(15:12) - An AIT marriage and being stationed with a spouse

(17:02) - The divergence of being a veteran and a dependent

(21:02) - No crosstalk between DoD Tricare and VA healthcare

(24:15) - The differences in VA care

(28:51) - Raising 3 kids and then going back to school

(32:00) - Plugging into first veterans organization and renewed sense of purpose

(41:32) - Counseling to a larger veterans advocacy focus

(45:25) - Finding what you're truly suited for

(51:50) - Play upfield in your career

(54:05) - Veteran Service Organizations; the good, the bad, and the underfunded

(58:20) - Unsolved problems facing the veteran community

(01:02:30) - Fundraising at veteran organizations

(01:09:07) - How to take veterans advocacy past just awareness

Whether you’re in the service for four years or twenty, you have learned skills, led teams, and learned what it takes to execute under pressure. While those past successes are valuable, they don’t always translate to a life or career when you get your DD214.

Join Brock in breaking down the skills and strategies current and former military members are using to build a successful careers on the outside the service.

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