Thank you all of our planning team members, sponsors, presenters, exhibitors, volunteers and attendees for an incredible two days of learning and connecting!

For continuing education and breakout session materials, please scroll down.

Save-the-Date for the 10th Annual Symposium! April 17 & 18, 2019!


The Coalition and our public & private sector planning partners are pleased to present the

9th Annual Statewide Symposium in Support of Service Members, Veterans & Their Families

April 18 & 19, 2018

Desert Willow Conference Center
4340 E. Cotton Center Blvd | Phoenix, AZ 85040

Sponsorship & exhibitor opportunities are available.

Download an event packet


This year’s event featured:

2 days of programming & 11 tracks – all focused on increasing knowledge, skills & abilities for serving and supporting the military, veteran and family population.

Day 1 General Session – we will be joined by an incredible Be Connected program leadership panel. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to hear from our key stakeholders working together to prevent military and veteran suicide. Panelists:

Tom Betlach – Director, Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System
William Caron – Director, Southern Arizona VA Health Care System
Blake Chaffee – Vice President of Integrated Care, TriWest Healthcare Alliance
Jake Leinenkugel – Senior White House Advisor to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
RimaAnn Nelson – Director, Phoenix VA Health Care System
Barbara Oemcke – Director, Northern Arizona VA Health Care System
CAPT Jon Perez – Regional Administrator, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Wanda Wright – Director, Arizona Department of Veterans’ Services

Day 2 General Session – the keynote presentation will be “Leadership, Overcoming Adversity & Growing Your Career” by  LTC (Ret) Justin Constantine, USMC

Networking with representatives from the military, government & community.

Exhibitor fair with programs and resources to assist service members, veterans & families.

Continuing Education Units provided for a variety of disciplines (see below for details).

2018 Symposium Tracks

View & Download the 2018 Symposium Agenda

(Please note that topics and speakers are subject to change, however the most current agenda will always be posted here.)

Comments from past Symposium Attendees:

“I am armed with new tools for my toolbox and I’m ready to be part of the change.”

“A lot of people talk about veterans and veteran support, but it’s a different world to find people that really take action.”

“Thank you for giving us this great opportunity to be better informed and to network.”

“I want to say THANK YOU for all that your team did to make the symposium last week so awesome! This was my first year to attend and I was totally blown away by it all! The amount of knowledge I walked away with and the number of contacts I now have is beyond belief!”


AGENDA: 2018 Symposium Agenda

(Please note that topics and speakers are subject to change, however the most current agenda will always be posted here.)

CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDITS: All attendees can request a certificate of attendance or continuing education credits at no additional cost by completing a request after the event. Please visit the CEU table at the event to register each day and then submit your request for a certificate within 30 days to this link:

If you have questions about continuing education, please contact the Greater Valley Area Health Education Center at or call 480-288-8260 x100.

We plan to offer continuing education for the following disciplines (subject to change).

NURSING: This event has been approved for 9.5 Continuing Education Units by the California Board of Nursing.

SOCIAL WORK: Your application for CEU-Preapproval from the AZ Chapter of NASW for “9th Annual Statewide Symposium in Support of Service Members, Veterans & Their Families” (04/18 – 04/19/2018) is approved for a total of 13 contact hours. Your certification number is 3171.

COUNSELORS: A certificate of attendance will be provided.

PACE/CCM: This program has been pre-approved by The Commission for Case Manager Certification to provide continuing education credit Certified Case Managers (CCM). The course is approved for 10.5 CE Contact hours.

CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (CLE): Symposium programming may be eligible for CLE credit. A CLE certificate of participation will be provided for attorneys who wish to utilize this continuing education event for credit. Email to request a form.

SCHOLARSHIPS: Thanks to the support of our partners and sponsors, full and partial scholarships are available to offset the cost of registration for those who would not otherwise be able to attend and to those traveling from outside of Central Arizona that would experience a financial hardship. To request a scholarship, you can submit a request at this link. (Note: please wait to register for the event until you hear from our team. A special link will be provided. Thank you!)

Scholarship request form:


Discount links will be sent to all partners, employers and navigators in February. If you don’t receive yours via email, please contact us at or 602-753-8802.

Discounts are available for groups of 3+ (10%) groups of 8+ (15%) from the same organization. Please use these codes to register all participants at the same time.


Exhibitor and sponsorship opportunities are available. Please contact or 602-753-8802 for more information.

NOTE: Exhibitor registration is separate from participant registration and must be confirmed in advance.


The conference center is located south of Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix. Hotels near the airport, especially on the south side, will be in close proximity to the Symposium. Here are a few options in the vicinity. Note that we don’t have a specific room block for the Symposium at any of these hotels however the Homewood Suites and Courtyard may offer a special rate for participants of events at Desert Willow Conference Center:

Homewood Suites by Hilton Phoenix Airport South | Courtyard Phoenix Airport | GreenTree Inn & Suites | Phoenix Marriott Tempe at the Buttes | Sheraton Phoenix Airport 


Requests for cancellation must be received by 3/31/18 at Registrations may be transferred to another individual.

For special accommodations, including dietary restrictions, please email or call 602-753-8802 by 4/4/18.


The following are PowerPoints, handouts and recommended resource materials provided by the presenters for some of the 36 breakout sessions at the Symposium. Are you looking for something not posted? Contact our team at and we will try to assist.

TRACK: Basic Needs, Benefits & Beyond

Access to VA Care – Northern AZ PowerPoint | Southern AZ PowerPoint

Aging Veterans – PowerPoint

Federal & State Benefits – PowerPoint | PowerPoint

Wounded Warrior Resources – PowerPoint

Innovations in Homelessness – PowerPoint

TRACK: Be Connected – Mental Health for Everyone

Peer Supports – PowerPoint

Be Connected – PowerPoint

Military/Veteran Resource Network Tour – PowerPoint | Site link

TRACK: Faith-Based

Faith-Based – PowerPoint | Congregation Support Handout | Mil/Vet Faith-Based Initiative Handout | Moral Injury Handout

TRACK: Clinical

Pain Management – Opioids – PowerPoint

TRACK: Higher Education

Retention – PowerPoint

TRACK: Legal

Legal Year in Review – PowerPoint


For information on the 2010 – 2017 Symposiums, visit the event archive page.