Veterans Initiative Civic Leadership Session #3

2017 Veterans Initiative fellows

Los Angeles, CA – On October 27th, 2017, the CAUSE Veterans Initiative had its third civic leadership session at Covington Capital Management.

Blas Villalobos speaking to the 2017 Veterans Initiative fellows

The session started off with Jeffery Chao, Assistant Director/Investigator of Veterans’ Employment & Training Services (VETS) at the US Department of Labor, and Blas Villalobos, Veterans Affairs Manager at the Office of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. Jeffery and Blas discussed policy issues surrounding veteran employment. When measuring the success of veteran employment efforts, Blas emphasized the importance of community leaders holding each other accountable in making sure organizations report accurate results.

Kim Yamasaki speaking to the 2017 Veterans Initiative fellows

Kim Yamasaki, Executive Director of CAUSE, gave the fellows a workshop on stewardship, which highlighted the importance of practicing philanthropy and supporting community organizations and their causes. She invited the fellows to share instances where they volunteered their time or financial support and the reasons they chose to do so. In doing so, Kim stressed the importance of next generation leaders becoming greater ambassadors of their communities. She encouraged the fellows to spread wealth, wisdom, and volunteerism among those they work with as well as the importance of being both a funder and fundraiser.

Gary Arakawa speaking to the 2017 Veterans Initiative fellows

Over dinner, the fellows had the opportunity to hear from Gary Arakawa, Boardmember of CAUSE and Managing Director of Covington Capital Management. Gary offered up the University of Texas at Austin 2014 Commencement Address, delivered by Admiral William H. McRaven, as as a model of key leadership qualities vital for success. The address drew metaphors from the rigorous physical and psychological challenges of boot camp training to the obstacles in our daily lives. Afterwards, he encouraged the fellows to see how they could relate their military training and experiences to their everyday mindsets in order to accomplish their future endeavors.