Advisory board formed to help guide military veterans center

Veterans Advisory Board

Tarleton State University

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

STEPHENVILLE, Texas—A new Military Veterans Services Center advisory board recently held its inaugural meeting on the campus of Tarleton State University.

The advisory board for the university’s Military Veterans Services Center will provide support and advice, said center director Dr. James Vardalis. Opened in November 2011, the center serves to work closely with U.S. military veteran students and dependents to help them achieve their educational goals at Tarleton.

“Our advisory board is made up of a rich diversity of professionals with vast experiences, ranging from a district court judge to a retired Air Force colonel,” said Vardalis. “The goal in forming the board was to capture a multiplicity of opinions. Prior military service was not a requirement.”

Members of the advisory board were invited to participate based on their leadership roles in their respective communities, as well as their commitment to the men and women of the United States armed forces, added Vardalis.

Serving as advisory board members are: the Hon. Jason Cashon, 266th District Court judge; Dr. Matt Hallgarth (USAF Ret.), Tarleton faculty representative; Alan Nash, Erath County district attorney; Jay Mills, president of J. Mills Contractors Inc.; Col. Kenny Weldon (USAF Ret.), mayor of Stephenville; Lt. Col. Jason Vranes, commander of Tarleton’s ROTC Texan Battalion; Ruth Buzzi-Perkins and Kent Perkins; U.S. Army veteran Lejeanna Willard, vice president of Tarleton’s Student Veteran Association; Elizabeth Johnson, coordinator of the center; and Dr. James Vardalis.

“The Military Veterans Services Center is committed to providing the best guidance and assistance to veterans and their families, and to become a model for other institutions of higher education,” said Vardalis. “The center, with assistance from the advisory board, is a place where the military student community can obtain reliable, straightforward and complete answers and solutions to the many issues facing veterans and their families regarding education.”

The Military Veterans Services Center, located in Room 121 of the Tarleton Center, will also develop projects to unite university veterans with the local community and promote student involvement in the newly established Student Veterans Association, said Johnson, the center’s coordinator.

There are currently 360 veterans attending Tarleton, plus another 270 dependents of veterans, Johnson said, and the numbers are expected to increase in coming years.

For more information about the Military Veterans Services Center at Tarleton State University, call (254) 968-1805 or visit


Tarleton State University
A member of The Texas A&M University System

Contact: Kurt Mogonye

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Advisory board formed to help guide military veterans center - Media Relations - Tarleton State University