Back to Top Skip to main content

Dr. Cordts welcomes regional coordinators to training

Dr. Paul Cordts, Deputy Assistant Director for Medical Affairs, addressed coordinators from the Recovery Coordination Program during annual training. (Courtesy photo) Dr. Paul Cordts, Deputy Assistant Director for Medical Affairs, addressed coordinators from the Recovery Coordination Program during annual training. (Courtesy photo)

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Operation Warfighter and Education and Employment Initiative coordinators and coordinators from the Military Caregiver Peer Forum Initiative participated in a two-day training and discussion session in Arlington, Virginia, April 30.

For the 28 coordinators who traveled from their regions to attend the training it was an atypical week, but it was also an important opportunity to discuss the future of recovery coordination, define measures of success, and better understand the avenues for collaboration within the Military Health System.

A typical week for regional coordinators working in support of the Defense Health Agency’s Recovery Coordination Program consists of meeting with service members and their families, conducting briefings to military and private sector leaders, and working hand-in-hand with medical and non-medical case managers to help service members and their caregivers through the recovery, rehabilitation, and transition or reintegration process. Through supporting education, employment, internship and caregiver programs, regional coordinators work on the front lines of care coordination. 

"As regional coordinators, you are the ones in the field. You impact lives on a daily basis," said Dr. Paul Cordts, Deputy Assistant Director, Medical Affairs who introduced the training session and set the discussion goals. "We want to provide you with the tools to continue to assist our wounded, ill and injured service members and their caregivers in their times of need, as best as possible."

Focused on better understanding and solving the challenges today’s service members and caregivers face during recovery and transition, Cordts outlined the importance of maintaining customized solutions for the most severely ill and injured service members and their caregivers.

"Programs and organizations that help to build relationships on behalf of service members and caregivers are critical," Cordts said. "However, we also must arm our service members with the ability to talk confidently about themselves and their experience."

As an example of successful partnership building on behalf of service members, Cordts referenced the work done through the Education and Employment Initiative. The Education and Employment Initiative coordinators identify more than 900 employers and more than 1,400 suitable employment opportunities for transitioning service members each month. As a result, coordinators produce more than 200 possible employment matches for transitioning service members on a monthly basis—and then help service members develop strong resumes by translating their military skills to the civilian workplace.

"What we do is unique," said Biff Mayo, a retired Army and Special Forces colonel, one of two Operation Warfighter and Education and Employment Initiative coordinators for the Southeast region. "We help service members who have had a significant change in their lives."

Those statistics are a point of pride for Denise Williams, the Education and Employment Initiative coordinator for the National Capital Region.

“As a military spouse I have a true passion for working with service members to ensure they have the resources needed to transition to civilian life,” Williams said.

For Lisa Goenen, Mayo’s counterpart in the Southeast region and a retired Army first sergeant, the stakes are personal and the positive outcomes are fulfilling.

“This job makes me feel good,” Goenen said. “I go to bed at night knowing I positively impacted someone’s day.”

As the training and discussion session progressed into working groups, those coordinators supporting the military caregiver community discussed why providing focused support for caregivers remains critical. The group noted that many caregivers are overwhelmed with information and deal with feelings of isolation, as well as caregiver fatigue.

“We are facilitators of hope,” said Jamela Davis, the Peer Support Coordinator for region seven and based at Fort Hood, Texas. “We give them that light at the end of the tunnel. We’re that someone to turn to.”

Tonia Russell, the Peer Support Coordinator for region one and based at Fort Drum, New York described how her experience as a caregiver helps her better understand the issues caregivers face.

“While my husband was going through his medical board, he was deeply depressed,” Russell said. “I just didn’t want anyone to ever go through what I went through during that process.”

The Recovery Coordination Program standardizes non-medical care provided to wounded, ill and injured service members across the military departments by streamlining the way care and support is delivered and tracked. For more information on the Recovery Coordination Program, Operation Warfighter, the Education and Employment Initiative and military caregiver support, visit

You also may be interested in...

Army Wounded Warrior perseveres despite COVID-19

Picture of military personnel wearing a face mask and shooting a bow and arrow

Army Wounded Warrior preserves through COVID-19 pandemic through continued physical activities.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Toolkit | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

Army leader finds rewarding position through Operation Warfighter

Image of Mr. Ortiz in uniform

Soldier turns Department of Commerce internship into full-time position.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

One Marine’s journey to recovery through adaptive sports

Woman in wheelchair on podium; holding up prosthetic leg

Marine veteran Annika Hutsler credits Military Adaptive Sports for helping her transition to civilian life.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

OWF and DFAS support injured Soldier on his path to success

Two men holding onto an award

Soper is now a recruiter for DFAS’ “Hire a Hero Program.”

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

DoD Compensation and Benefits Handbook


The purpose of this handbook is to provide Service members and their support networks with a reference guide to answer some of the most pressing questions that arise for wounded, ill, and/or injured Service members.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care | DoD Compensation and Benefits Handbook

OWF sailor finds a sense of purpose with ICE internship

Woman holding award plaque, surrounded by colleagues

OWF coordinates non-funded federal internships between qualified wounded, ill and injured service members and a variety of federal agencies..

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Military medicine confronts an invisible enemy

Medical personnel set up in an outside military tent

The collective response to the pandemic underscored the MHS reputation for innovation, with practical applications beyond military medicine.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Warrior Care | Public Health | Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask | December Toolkit

The Walkups: Army service is in their blood

Five young men standing in a line, wearing the same t-shirt and pants

Of his seven living siblings, two are active-duty Army captains and two more are in Army’s Reserve Officers’ Training Course (ROTC).

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

MHS Minute: November 2020

Image of MHS Minute Carousel

During Warrior Care Month, we reflect on the strength and resilience of our nation's wounded, ill, and injured service members, and recognize the caregivers who support their recovery and rehabilitation.

Recommended Content:

November Toolkit | Heroes Behind the Mask | Heroes Behind the Mask | Warrior Care

Navy military caregiver pays it forward

Group of men and women on a stage, some standing, some sitting

The Warrior Games and Warrior Care Recovery Coordination Program helped the Cozad family understand their new reality.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care | Physical Disability

Recovering service members, not just a number with OWF

image of Mr. Rodriguez in uniform

OWF is a...program that matches qualified wounded, ill and injured service members with non-funded federal internships.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Warrior Care RCP’s multitude of programs supports the Warfighter

Three men shooting arrows at targets

Since 2008, The Department of Defense has recognized November as Warrior Care Month.

Recommended Content:

November Toolkit | Warrior Care

Indiana National Guard amputee stays true to his motto - ‘Never Quit’

Soldier with leg prosthesis putting on his shoe.

Life and limbs are often casualties.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Warrior Care

Suicide impacts us all – but there is help!

Man at sporting event kissing his wife and baby

September marks Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

Recommended Content:

Suicide Prevention | Coronavirus | Warrior Care | September Toolkit

PREVENTS aimed at reducing Service Member and Veteran suicide

Group of airmen hugging each other

In our nation, suicide has increased by 33% over the last 25 years across all demographics.

Recommended Content:

Suicide Prevention | Warrior Care | September Toolkit | Total Force Fitness
<< < 1 2 3 4 5 > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 5

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.