Defining “Veteran Ready” Employers

Defining “Veteran Ready” Employers

Some of the most common phrases we hear are “We want to hire veterans” and “We are veteran friendly”.  Many employers know the inherent value military veterans can bring to their workforce.  Consider the traditional characteristics: disciplined, capable, leaders, problem solvers, and more.  Who wouldn’t want dependable employees capable of rising through the management levels and leading the business into sustainable growth scenarios?  How do we find veterans to hire?  How do we grow from “veteran friendly” to “veteran ready”?

There is a way to attract and retain veteran employees that has more to do with your internal culture and leadership, and less to do with your talent acquisition strategy.

It is crucial to understand that veterans are on a second career, are purpose-driven, and tend to be loyal to individuals and missions (not businesses). They are individuals seeking gainful employment with benefits that offer stability.  The culture of the business, management, and inner office space play a big role in retention. 

This break-out session will delve deeper into what businesses can implement to attract and retain military veterans through leadership development and mentorship. Make your business “Veteran Ready” by attending this break-out session at 10:00 a.m. in Room 2, inside the Business Expo. 

SUGGESTED ATTENDEES: HR representatives, Hiring Managers, Business Owners, Managers of every level, and more...




As a true bilingual human resource generalist with over ten years of progressive experience, Valerie has worked in a variety of fast-paced, quickly changing industries, including retail and grocery, education, manufacturing, and health care. Valerie’s experience and strengths are recruiting, employee relations, benefits planning, and performance management. She has an extensive background with difficult employee relations issues, balancing recommendations to ensure the best decision is being made for both the employee and the business, while fully understanding the impact those decisions have on company culture. Valerie Grube, Manager, Recruiting and Retention Services at MRA


William “Bill” Statz - Founder And Owner Of Statz Corporation, Service Disabled Veteran.

Bill is a Vietnam veteran, ’68-’69, serving in the 4th Infantry Division, Artillery. He is the recipient of Medals for his heroic actions while under heavy enemy rocket and mortar attacks. His disability injuries were a result of these incoming barrages. Bill’s education includes degrees in Mechanical/Manufacturing Engineering, and Business Administration/Management from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

His storied career in engineering/management/entrepreneurship crosses a number of industries and technologies. This varied and extensive background provides a valuable knowledge base for STATZ Corporation to provide a special level of service as an SDV Dealer, to both our customers and suppliers.


Tim LaSage – Military Affairs Manager at WPS Health Solutions

First Sergeant Timothy La Sage served in the Marine Corps for over 22 years.  During his career he earned 02 Purple Heart medals, 03 Navy Commendation medals- two with valor in combat, and 02 Navy Achievement medals for life saving actions.  

As a Scout Sniper, Tim has been featured on the History Channel for his work in Ramadi Iraq. He also worked in an Anti-Terrorism team, a Special Operations Capable small boat unit and a Joint Special Operations Capable Task Force.  Tim is a Wisconsin native and works for WPS Health Solutions as their national Military Affairs Manager.

WPS was born in 1946 to provide WWII soldiers returning home to Wisconsin with affordable health insurance and a well-run health system.  They are still  a leading not-for-profit health insurer in Wisconsin, and their services have grown to reach active-duty and retired military personnel, seniors, and families in Wisconsin, across the U.S., and around the world.


Tom Palzewicz – Partner, Certified Business Coach at ActionCOACH Elm Grove

After serving in the Armed Services on the USS Scamp, a nuclear submarine, Tom ventured into the world of accounting and finance, receiving his Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a major in Accounting. He enjoyed a rewarding career in banking with Firstar, Marshall & Ilsley, Associated Bank, and US Bank.  While working in corporate banking Tom discovered his passion lay in a much different arena – community growth and development.  He immediately recognized ActionCOACH would help him to achieve this vision.

Tom became a certified ActionCOACH business coach in 2005.  His 15+ years in finance, management, and team-building provide a solid foundation of expertise for small business management and improvement.