WASHINGTON – Mixed among the high-profile politicians and business leaders who will be in attendance at the president’s Capitol Hill speech on jobs tonight are a pair of veterans whose stories provide a look at the struggles and opportunities military members face in the civilian job market.
Here are their bios, courtesy of the White House:
Joseph Kidd, a 30-year-old father, joined the U.S. Navy in 2003 and completed Hospital Corpsman School. Upon graduation, Kidd received his orders to Naval Hospital Okinawa, in Japan. Once his rotation was complete, he moved to Camp Lejeune, NC.
While at Camp Lejeune, Kidd was attached to a Marine Corps command, and deployed to Iraq in 2007. After he returned from Iraq, his daughter was born in January of 2009, and he was deployed again in May of 2009 as part of the 22D Marine Expeditionary Unit. Once Kidd returned, he was appointed to the Emergency Room at Camp Lejeune and later became the Leading Petty Officer. In April 2011, Kidd received his separation orders.
In August, Kidd was one of five veterans to eat lunch with President Obama in Cannon Falls, Minn., during the rural bus tour. Kidd asked the President to help with credentialing programs that would allow a service member to take his or her skills from the military directly into the private sector.
The President’s staff is now actively working on the concept of a “career ready military.” In late August, Kidd returned to school and studying pre-nursing.
John Raftery served in the U.S. Marine Corps with 1st Marine Division and currently serves as the president and CEO of Patriot Contractors, a construction firm, specializing in interior and exterior architectural specialties.
A service-disabled, veteran-owned company founded in 2007, John has seen growth in revenues and employees each and every year of operation. Today, Patriot Contractors has 21 employees. In 2010, John’s company generated revenues that hit $2M, and he is on track to exceed $5M in 2011.
John is a 2007 graduate of the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans at Syracuse University and holds a BBS from Dallas Baptist University.