Col. Kevin McDonnell (ret.), Director of the U.S. Special Operations Command Care Coalition, will speak on the needs of wounded, ill, and disabled troops and how communities can support their successful transition to civilian life.
He will be joined by Tommy Norman, president of Norcom Properties and founder of Charlotte Bridge Home, a model community advocacy program for wounded Special Operations Service members and families who are relocating to Charlotte; Paul Passaro, program director of Charlotte Bridge Home; and Easter Maynard (MSW ’97) of Golden Corral Corp., who leads Golden Corral’s signature philanthropy project Camp Corral, a free summer camp for children of wounded, disabled or fallen soldiers.
The lecture will be in the auditorium of the Tate-Turner-Kuralt building (School of Social Work) at 325 Pittsboro St. on the UNC campus. Parking will be available in the deck of the FedEx Global Education building on the corner of Pittsboro and McCauley Streets.
About Col. Kevin McDonnell:
Kevin McDonnell was selected to be the Director of U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) Care Coalition in September 2011 after serving for 29 years as a Green Beret. He provides direct oversight of the non-medical case management for all Special Operations Forces wounded, ill, or injured service members and their families through recovery, rehabilitation, reintegration and transition.
McDonnell attended North Carolina State University and entered active duty in the United States Army in 1985. After attending the Officer’s Basic Course, he was assigned to the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, N.C. He served as a Special Forces Detachment Commander and Support Company Commander, 1st Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (ABN). Following a brief assignment in Panama, he returned to the 5th Special Forces Group in August 1990 for deployment in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Subsequently, he was assigned to the Military District of Washington, where he served in positions on the Joint Staff and outside the Department of Defense.
McDonnell commanded B Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (ABN) and served as Executive Officer for the Group from 1996-1999. From 1999-2001, he served as an assistant for counterterrorism policy and as the Military Assistant to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy. Mr. McDonnell commanded 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group from 2001-2003 and twice deployed the battalion for combat operations in Afghanistan. In August 2003, he was assigned to USSOCOM, MacDill AFB, Florida. From June 2005 to June 2007, he commanded the 5th Special Forces Group (ABN) at Fort Campbell, Kentucky and served for 16 months as the Commander of the Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force – Arabian Peninsula (CJSOTF-AP) in Balad, Iraq.
From July 2007 to September 2011, McDonnell served as the Director of the USSOCOM Washington Office (SOWO). The SOWO represents USSOCOM in the National Capital Region (NCR), and is responsible for interactions with the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Joint and Service staffs, and all other NCR government and non-government agencies.
His military awards and decorations include the Combat Infantryman’s Badge with Star, the Defense Superior Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star with three oak leaf clusters, and numerous campaign and combat service medals/badges. McDonnell earned a Bachelor of Science in Economics from North Carolina State University, a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College, and a Master of Science in National Security and Strategic Studies from the National War College.
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