This story starts with Jay Cimino, the man who founded the Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center and defined its mission.
After serving in the Marine Corps as a young man, Jay returned to civilian life and became a highly successful businessman. Now, he is CEO and owner of Phil Long Dealerships, the largest privately held automobile dealership group in Colorado. Throughout his life, Jay has had a passion for supporting our local military and their families in numerous ways. He provided assistance to family members during deployments as well as supported military organizations.
In 2014, he wanted to take the next step. Jay decided to create a place where military, veterans, and their families can get the support and services they deserve: the Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center.
Mt. Carmel’s mission is:
“To collaborate with community partners providing best practices in transition and wellness services for veterans, military and their families by delivering expertise, resources, space and sustainability.”
LeaderQuest is proud to participate in Mt. Carmel’s mission by offering free workshops that focus on expanding professional skills, such as maximizing the potential of LinkedIn and the art of the interview.
We were able to get a few minutes of time from Cindy McLaughlin, Marketing and Communications Manager for Mt. Carmel, to ask her about Mt. Carmel’s mission and progress so far.
1. How does Mt. Carmel serve the local community?
At its core, everything we do at Mt. Carmel is designed to make it EASY for military, veterans, and their family members to get the resources and services they deserve. In our 16,000 square foot center, we partner with over 30 great organizations, like LeaderQuest, to bring a broad array of services together under one roof. In addition, the great services our partners deliver include VA benefits support, financial counseling, workforce support, and educational assistance and counseling. Our Mt. Carmel Staff runs multiple programs to include the employment and transition, behavioral health counseling and wellness, and supportive services management and resource navigation.
2. What has been the most challenging thing about fulfilling Mt. Carmel’s mission?
The most challenging thing has been creating an environment where so many different organizations can be successful in serving veterans by integrating services without feeling like they lose their own unique identities. It is really important to us that our partners know that they are valued and that we respect their separate needs as individual organizations, and that by working together with us, we all can be better at meeting our individual AND collective missions.
3. Since opening in March of 2016, what has Mt. Carmel accomplished in the community?
We are thrilled to share that since we began operations in 2016, we have supported 8,311 client visits. We have also secured employment or critical training placements for more than 557 transitioning service members at an average wage of $26.10/hour. We’ve also provided behavioral health counseling to over 150 military-connected individuals and resolved the needs of over 394 people so that they could become more self-sufficient.
4. What do you want to make sure veterans know as they transition?
Transitioning from military service to a new civilian life can be a very stressful time for not only the service member but also for their entire family. We have a unique focus on service members in transition as all of our Peer Navigators working one-on-one with them at Mt. Carmel are recent veterans themselves. They know exactly what it feels like to go through that life change. Mt. Carmel’s staff can help them with more than just finding a meaningful civilian career – they can provide support through all of the areas; financial consultations, behavioral health counseling, and even connections to housing opportunities if you need that. But, the most important message for those in transition is that “you are not alone!” Our team and our wonderful partners are here to help and we know that each service member can achieve great things in their civilian lives!
5. How can volunteers help Mt. Carmel’s mission?
At Mt. Carmel there are lots of opportunities to volunteer. We have people support our front desk activities with Greet and Connect, we have resource fairs and other outreach opportunities where volunteers can represent us to the public, and they can also do any number of office types of support. Specifically, in our employment and transition departments, we can always use people to support our networking and mock interview events. We will try to fit the best job to each volunteer so that they can feel happy and satisfied at the end of the day!
Click here if you’d like to help support the Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center.
We ❤ Veterans!
At LeaderQuest, veterans hold a special place in our hearts. Many of our team members are veterans, as well as much of our leadership team. We love employing veterans because they bring discipline, commitment, and strength to our team.
We wanted to give a big THANK YOU to all the veterans out there. We value your service and your sacrifice. Thank you for making America safer and stronger.