Celebrating Veterans Day with Erica Courtney

NAWRB would like to give special thanks to NAWRB Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Council (NDILC) Member Erica Courtney, President of 2020vet and Zulu Time, U.S. Army Aviation Major, NATO Gender Advisor, and California Commissioner on the Status of Women & Girls, appointed by California Governor Gavin Newsom, not only for her service but also for her contribution to NDILC and the NAWRB community.

Erica Courtney is a U.S. Army veteran having served in various positions to include; military police, scout helicopter pilot and paratrooper. As a trailblazer, she was part of the first group of women to go Cavalry and the first to graduate the Advanced Armor Cavalry Course. Erica continues to serve the nation as a Major in the U.S. Army Reserve under the Joint Chiefs of Staff working on Women, Peace and Security initiatives as the only NATO certified Gender Advisor working at political and strategic levels.

To celebrate Veterans Day, NAWRB is releasing Erica Courtney’s story on being a Woman Veteran. Don’t miss this impactful life story about the trials and tribulations of being a woman veteran and how Erica Courtney persevered for the United States of America!

Part 1 of 6
I am proudly part of the 1.4 percent of American women who served in the military. The day I signed the paperwork to join as a teenager the Gulf War kicked off and I watched tanks fire through the night on TV thinking, “What in the world did I do?” Having grown up in surf city USA (Huntington Beach, CA), I was never exposed to the military. To emphasize this point, the first time I walked into an Army recruiting office I had sand in my hair and sun-kissed skin; I was with a friend of mine and said, “Hi, I am thinking about joining the Marines,” not even understanding the difference in services. The recruiter took a few looks at us, confused, and had to be thinking, “Sucker!” Having always been athletic and adventurous, I thought why not. I would rather try something and hate it than wonder what it would have been like. College was a bore and I was ready for the unknown.

“Get off the bus, you maggots!” Welcome to Military Police Basic Training. What was wrong with these people? Why so much yelling? Okay, bag in hand off the bus I went into the barracks. This is actually where Hollywood gets it right. There’s lots of yelling, climbing, learning, bonding and trying to stay under the radar. Except, I learned early on that was pretty hard for me. I was a runner breaking six-minute miles, and one particular drill sergeant could not stand that there was a female in his fast group and did whatever he could to break me. He was an infantry man where they did not work with women. There were many days of unnecessary hazing to the point he was counseled by the officers. He tried to make me cry, but failed. Many more attempts would follow. I learned early, never let them see you sweat and there is no crying in uniform.
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Celebrate Veterans Day Nov. 11th!

Veterans Day is Sunday, November 11th, but will be observed on the following Monday, a national holiday honoring all the men and women who have served in American wars with parades, speeches and a remembrance ceremony in Arlington, VA. The day originated as “Armistice Day” on Nov.11, 1919, marking the first anniversary of the end of World War I. In 1926, Congress passed a resolution to make the day an annual observance, before President Dwight D. Eisenhower declared Veterans Day a national holiday in 1954.

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Happy Veterans Day 2017!

Veterans Day is here again, a day dedicated to honoring and paying respects to American active and retired servicemen and women. Originally celebrated as Armistice Day in 1919 for veterans of the First World War, the holiday was expanded to include veterans of all wars by a May 1954 bill; six days later the celebration’s name was changed to Veterans Day.

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Veterans Day 2016: Thanking our Veterans


This Friday, November 11 is Veterans Day, a day to honor our country’s active and retired servicemen and women. The first Armistice Day was celebrated in 1919 and initially celebrated veterans of World War I. In 1954, a bill expanding the holiday to veterans of all wars passed and was amended six days later to officially make the holiday’s name Veterans Day.

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SBA Funding Opportunity for Women Veteran Entrepreneurship Training


Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Veterans Business Development (OVBD) announced a $300,000 funding opportunity for women and veteran-owned businesses. The SBA’s Women Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program anticipates giving out six awards as part of the funding opportunity, with a minimum amount of $25,000 per award.

Who Should Apply

The SBA is extending the funding opportunity to non-profit organizations, local or state agencies, private sector firms and higher learning institutions; beneficiaries of the program will range from veterans to women spouses of service members.

In their release, the SBA stated, “Successful applicants will be organizations with a demonstrated history of providing successful entrepreneurship training to women veterans, women service members, and women spouses of service members and veterans.”

A Q&A conference call will be held on November 30, 2016 at 3 p.m. EST. To join the conference call, dial 1-888-858-2144, access code 5817583#. For the opportunity to have your questions answered during the call, you must submit them to Janet Moorman at janet.moorman@sba.gov no later than November 16.

Facts on Women Veteran Owned Small Businesses:

  • As of 2012, women veterans owned 383,302 businesses generating $17.9 billion in sales
  • From 2007 to 2012, women veteran owned small businesses increased by 294.7 percent.

With Veterans Day 2016 fast approaching, we must remember to recognize and celebrate the contributions of our veterans and veteran business owners. This funding opportunity from the SBA is a great resource for these entrepreneurs whose success is vital to our country and economy.

The deadline to apply is December 12, 2016. For more information, please refer to program announcement No. WVETP-2017-01 at www.grants.gov.