Monday, May 10 – Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Start Time: 8:30 am (MT)/9:30 am (CT)

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The month of May is a time to raise awareness of those living with mental or behavioral health issues, especially among our Veteran population.

We are inviting you to attend a special virtual summit targeted towards health care professionals delivering care to Veterans and their families.

Learning Objectives:

  • Articulate mental health issues confronting Veterans and their families
  • Discuss current research on service-related mental health disorders
  • Explore the impact of mental health issues experienced by Veterans and their families
  • Provide professional development in meeting mental health needs
  • Explore community goals in meeting the mental health needs of Veterans and their families

CEUs Available for Social Workers, Licensed Professional Counselors, and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists. CEUs provided only to professionals licensed in the state of Texas.

Acceptance of CEU is dependent on other states. Other interested health care providers will be issued a certificate of completion.

View Agenda

Jill E. Palmer, DSW, LCSW – Key Note Speaker
Senior Director of Clinic Operation – Endeavors
Dr. Palmer, a Navy Veteran, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and 2019 graduate of the Doctor of Social Work program at the University of Tennessee with a research focus on Veterans, suicide prevention and quality of life. Dr. Palmer has ten years of leadership experience through both the Navy and the private sector. She has led teams of social workers, psychiatrists, and other medical and mental health personnel; provided program oversight for multiple programs; developed policies and procedures to implement evidence-based practices; and has managed program budgets. With over 16 years of experience as a licensed clinical social worker, she is experienced in treating trauma, depression and anxiety in children, families, Veterans, and active duty populations. Jill is passionate about leading healthy, productive, innovative teams. Dr. Palmer is spearheading the implementation of the Veteran Wellness Center in San Antonio, Texas, which is focusing on the integration of mental health, physical health, recovery services with a foundation of wellness principles.
Dr. Palmer, a Navy Veteran, and 2019 graduate from the Doctor of Social Work program at the University of Tennessee. Research focus on Veterans, suicide prevention and quality of life. With ten years of leadership experience and over 16 years of experience as a licensed clinical social worker, she is experienced in treating trauma, depression and anxiety in children, families, Veterans, and active duty populations. Dr. Palmer is spearheading the implementation of the Veteran Wellness Center in San Antonio, Texas, which is focusing on the integration of mental health, physical health, recovery services with a foundation of wellness principles.

Samantha Gonzalez, MPH, CPH
Physical Health and Wellness Coach – Wounded Warrior Project
Summit Presentation: If You Can Breath, You Can Do It: Utilizing Yoga as an Adjunctive Treatment for Veterans with PTSD

Samantha Gonzalez is a Physical Health and Wellness Coach with Wounded Warrior Project. Samantha specializes in implementing health behavior change interventions focused on nutrition, physical activity, and stress management for Post-9/11 Veterans and their caregivers. Through her education and work history, Samantha has over 10 years of public health experience extending mixed-methods research development, patient health education, and grant writing. A strong believer in making evidence-based health information accessible to all, Samantha is passionate about knowledge translation and implementation science. Samantha enjoys watching Spurs games but can also be found playing golf with her husband on a sunny day.

Mia Garcia
Executive Director – Texas Veterans Network, Combined Arms
Summit Presentation: Connectedness

Mia Garcia is a native Houstonian and proud Texan. She enlisted in the Marine Corps just before 9/11; served multiple enlistments with both active and reserve components, including a deployment in support of Operation Enduring & Iraqi Freedom. After serving 8 years and earning the rank of Sergeant, she received an honorable discharge in 2011.

After transitioning from the Marines, she served as a volunteer for Lone Star Veterans Association (LSVA) where she found her passion to encourage and assist fellow veterans, ensuring they are connected with the resources they need to successfully transition. In her most recent role with NextOp, Mia led a team of 8 in an organized effort to recruit, train, and help place over 2,200 middle enlisted military leaders into industry careers. Mia is passionate about positively impacting the veteran community and actively participates in activities focused on ensuring no veteran falls through the cracks. She currently serves Combined Arms as the Texas Veterans Network Director. The Texas Veterans Network is a statewide initiative that

Dr. Scott P. Rheinschmidt, Ph.D., LPCS
Clinic Director – Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Endeavors in San Antonio
Summit Presentation:Embracing Spiritual Practices to Enhance Wellness: The Benefits of Tai Chi & Qigong as a Spiritual Practice

Dr. Rheinschmidt is a Licensed Professional Counselor – Supervisor and has been working in the mental health field for over 20 years. He is also a retired Air National Guard Veteran who served for over 24 years and experienced several deployments overseas including active duty in Southwest Asia in support of OEF and OIF.

Dr. Rheinschmidt serves as the Clinic Director providing leadership to an extensive staff that provides professional counseling services to over 350 Veterans and or their family members at any given time.

Dr. Rheinschmidt has been training in the martial arts of Tai Chi Chuan and Kung Fu for over 12 years and provides Tai Chi classes to Veterans and Staff Members of Endeavors on a weekly basis. He currently holds a 3rd Degree Black in Kung Fu and a 3rd Degree Black Sash in Tai Chi and believes in the holistic health benefits of regular exercise and meditation activities. His dissertation entitled: ‘Tai Chi as an Essential Part of Psychotherapy: Advancing the Understanding and Practice of Mind-Body Therapy in the Mental Health Profession’ contains extensive research on the many benefits of practicing Tai Chi.

Dr. Rheinschmidt holds a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Psychology and Christian Counseling from Louisiana Baptist University, Master’s Degree in Community Counseling from St. Mary’s University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in General Studies from American Christian College & Seminary. He has served in the Lutheran Church and Catholic Church in various capacities with a main focus on supporting the spiritual growth of others.
will make Texas the first interconnected state for veterans and their families.

Joshua Jabin
Chief Operating Officer – Travis Manion Foundation
Summit Presentation:Environmental

Joshua Jabin serves as Travis Manion Foundation’s Chief Operating Officer responsible for leading staff and developing/implementing strategy. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 2001 and served 12 years active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2001 to 2013 in various leadership and operations management roles. He earned a M.S. in Operations Research from the Naval Postgraduate School in 2009 and taught Mathematics at the U.S. Naval Academy from 2009-2013.

Following his transition from active duty, Josh spent two years as a management consultant working with healthcare leaders to develop strategy and improve performance. Josh is a Major in the Marine Corps Reserves and resides in Yardley, PA with his wife Katie and daughters Alaina, Juliet, and Liberty.

Jessica Walgenbach
Financial Planner – Prudential Pathways
Summit Presentation:Financial Challenges of a Sandwich Generation

Jessica is passionate about providing her clients with the tools and education they need to navigate life’s financial challenges. With nearly 5 years in the financial services industry, all at Prudential, Jessica recognizes the more knowledge her clients have, the more empowered and confident they feel about achieving their goals.

Jessica holds a bachelor’s degree from New Mexico State University. Jessica specializes in assisting business owners with their professional and personal planning, with individual family financial planning and with women’s financial literacy. Jessica also volunteers with many groups dedicated to children’s wellbeing and education including Austin Child Guidance Center and El Paso In Austin. In addition to volunteering her time, Jessica also serves on the steering committee for El Paso In Austin and the Puerto Rican Cultural Center.

Jessica and her boyfriend, Matt, live in Pflugerville, TX with their 2 dogs, Mordecai and Holden and their cat, Doc. They enjoy engaging in kayaking, paddle boarding, listening to live music and enjoying time with family and friend.

Sherman Gillums, Jr
Chief Strategy & Operations Officer – NAMI
Summit Presentation:Mental Health and Sexual Assault in the Military – Panel Discussion

Sherman Gillums Jr. leads operations for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, where’s he’s responsible for executing the organization’s 5-year strategic plan. He also oversees the organization’s efforts to universalize timely access to appropriate mental healthcare for underserved communities and the de-stigmatization of mental illness.

In his previous role with AMVETS, he served as chief strategy and advocacy officer, where he was responsible for developing and launching the organization’s HEAL program with a focus on holistic intervention for veterans at risk of suicide, as well as legislative efforts on a host of issues. While serving as executive director of Paralyzed Veterans of America, he led the organization’s national advocacy efforts to monitor and improve healthcare for catastrophically injured veterans.

A widely sought-after voice for veterans, Gillums has testified before Congress as an expert witness and appeared on major networks such as CNN, Fox News, CBS News, and CSPAN. His timely opinion editorials in The Hill, Military Times, Washington Times, and other prominent print publications have proven influential in shaping policy and discourse on veterans’ issues.

For this work, he was selected one of HillVets 100 most influential leaders in 2014. His alma mater, University of San Diego, also inducted him into its Alumni Hall of Honor in 2016.

Gillums served in the United States Marine Corps for 12 years, joining at age 17, and received an honorable discharge at the rank of chief warrant officer 2 after suffering severe injury while in uniform. His awards include the Navy/Marine Commendation Medal (2nd award), Navy/Marine Achievement
Medal, Global War on Terror Service Medal, and Marine Drill Instructor Ribbon.

He holds a master’s degree from University of San Diego’s School of Business Administration, and he completed his executive education at Harvard Business School

Kimberly Bailey, MSW
Summit Presentation:Mental Health and Sexual Assault in the Military – Panel Discussion

Kimberly Sciutto-Bailey is a U.S. Army Veteran, Civil Rights advocate, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion specialist, and University of Southern CA, School of Social Work alumni. As a Social Worker specializing in adverse childhood experiences and community intervention, Kimberly has a unique perspective in trauma informed support and holistic veteran mental health considerations.

Kimberly has over 10 years of experience working with high risk youth and families, veterans, and trauma-informed crisis work, including military and veteran social advocacy initiatives. Currently, she works as a diversity and inclusion trainer and civil rights officer for the State of California and does volunteer work as a mentor with female veterans in the veterans treatment court.

She also volunteers as a crisis interventionist and runs support groups and advocacy campaigns for her fellow veterans through her mental health and wellness/social advocacy organization, Invisible Combat.

Retired Master Sgt. Crystal C. Romero
Summit Presentation:Mental Health and Sexual Assault in the Military – Panel Discussion

Master Sergeant Crystal C. Romero retired after serving 16 ½ years in the US Army National Guard, serving primarily in her home State of New Mexico. She also volunteered for federal service, serving alongside active duty and the Department of Homeland Security. Today, she is an activist for veteran’s causes and currently holds the following positions: Co-Founder & Chief Communications Officer for Invisible Combat (a veteran’s nonprofit); National Member for LULAC’s Military and Veteran’s Affairs Committee; and is currently involved in drafting legislation related to military sexual assault and veteran’s mental health.

Crystal held various positions throughout her military career, beginning in logistics and later transferring to a Public Affairs Detachment. She then transitioned to the 64th Weapons of Mass Destruction-Civil Support Team as a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Specialist. There she ran operations and was activated for the Space Shuttle Columbia recovery efforts in 2003. Concurrently, she served with the New Mexico Counter Narcotics Task Force serving as the Command Staff Non-Commissioned Officer.

In her final years in the military, she was a Senior Human Resources Specialist, Platoon Sergeant, Sexual Assault Victim Advocate, member of the Safety Counsel, National Guard Bureau Counterdrug Program Evaluation team member and the Joint Substance Abuse Program Coordinator for the State of New Mexico.

After her honorable discharge, in 2014, Crystal struggled to adjust to civilian life and found herself battling depression and PTSD. That struggle is what prompted her to start volunteering to help other veterans, that were presumably, worse off than she was. This was to be her path to redemption
and the way she plans to make her mark in the veteran’s community: through her advocacy. She currently resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico with her three daughters.

Her awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal (3rd award), Army Achievement Medal (4th award), and Reserve Overseas Service Ribbon.

Petty Officer 2nd Class, Pan Phyu
Summit Presentation:Mental Health and Sexual Assault in the Military – Panel Discussion

United States Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Pan Phyu currently serves as a Culinary Specialist (Surface Warfare/Aviation Warfare/Intelligence Warfare) at Naval Base San Diego. A Fort Wayne, Indiana native, Pan and her sisters were born in a Burmese refugee camp in Thailand amid widespread human rights violations in 1993. 
For nearly four years, the family endured hunger and poverty, living in a violent farming community, where Pan was wounded as a child during one explosion. In 1996, Pan and her family immigrated to Fort Wayne, Indiana, where they lived in a refugee community while pursuing U.S. citizenship, after which she and her sister Thae joined the military.
During Pan’s distinguished career as a military culinary specialist, she has served aboard one of the world’s largest warships, the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, and participated in the 44th Annual Joint Culinary Training Exercise, the largest American Culinary Federation sanctioned military chef competition in North America. She received the silver award for “Professional Chef of the Year” in 2019 at Fort Lee, VA. 
Pan, who is a survivor of sexual assault while serving in the military, became a national voice on the decriminalization of mental illness and greater accountability in addressing military sexual assault. Her efforts on behalf of sister Thae, a Marine and rape survivor who became the target of a command investigation herself, have garnered the support of many in media, government, and veteran advocacy. 
After she completes her military career, Pan’s interest range from ministry and firefighting to studying political science and running for Congress in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Bob Hunter

Bob Hunter is a U.S. Navy veteran who served from July 1980 to December 1984 as an Electronics Technician in the Nuclear Power Program. During his time in service, Bob worked as part of the Lebanon Multinational Peacekeeping Force aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69), where his battle group responded to the barracks bombing in Beirut and repeated aggression from Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. 
While enrolled in ET “A” school Bob met his attacker, a colleague who had befriended and groomed him before raping him after a night out at the Petty Officer’s club on base in 1981. He had repressed the memory of his attack until March 4, 2013 while he was working for the Veterans of Foreign Wars as Department of Connecticut’s member to their National Legislative Committee and Department Legislative Chairman, District 5 Commander, and the Commander of Post 9086 in Torrington.

Prior to that signal event, he served as a Veterans’ Advocate while holding other leadership positions in the VFW. Since 2013 Bob has appeared in interviews in The Baltimore Sun, a Gentleman’s Quarterly article entitled “Embattled: Retaliation against Sexual Assault Survivors in the US,” and the Military and the Veteran’s Health section of He testified before the House Armed Services Committee Joint Caucus, been a panelist at multiple screenings of The Invisible War and appeared on To the Contrary with Host Bonnie Erbé. He will also be appearing in the forthcoming documentary, Hold Me Right. 
Bob has completed his Peer Support certification, and his first year of graduate studies at the Smith College School for Social Work.



Veterans Mental Health Summit

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