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HR is in with Natalie: Veterans in the Workplace

Today we are talking about Veterans in the Workplace. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, 65% of veterans have some college education, or higher, making veterans more educated than their civilian peers and according to the Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University 68% of employers report that veterans perform "better than" or "much better than" their civilian peers. So why is it that many recruiters and companies shy away from hiring them? LinkedIn reports that 38 out of the top 50 industries employ Veterans at lower rates than non-Veterans.


Our Experts


Demond Johnson A2 Fitness Professionals

Demond is certified through the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, American Fitness Professionals Association, and International Fitness Association and has been for over eighteen years. Along with his extensive training career he has retired from the United States Army with over 20 years of active duty service. During his tenure he has acquired numerous certifications and has been charged with many additional duties. Amongst these military duties, he was assigned as an Army Master Fitness Trainer, an Army Weight Control Program Coordinator, and Modern Army Combative Instructor.


As an instructor/personal trainer/fitness therapist Demond has worked with all populations who desire to start a new fitness program, those interested in losing weight, and those wanting to build muscular strength and endurance. This includes obese clients, deconditioned individuals, those going through back and shoulder rehabilitation, expecting mothers, clients with diabetes and asthma, as well as youth clients. Clients also include those with spinal cord injuries, cognitive skills impairment, traumatic brain injuries, Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, early stages of dementia, Friedreich’s Ataxia, Parkinson’s, and amputees.


Being a part of the Ann Arbor and Michigan community for just over twelve years, Demond's impact as the CEO of A2 Fitness Professionals has been nothing short of phenomenal. In his time here he has become actively involved with many groups in efforts to better the community’s overall health and wellness. Some of these groups include the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center's Community Outreach Program, the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan, the American Heart Association has awarded Demond with the Gold Community and Gold Workplace Innovation Awards, Rainbow Rehabilitation Center, Special Tree Rehabilitation System, Origami, and the Eisenhower Center where he is charged with the healthy initiative programs. Demond is also on the Board of Director’s for Growing Hope and is the President of The Share Initiative which is a local non-profit created to target homelessness.


Demond's primary goal as CEO is to improve health and wellness of the Greater Ann Arbor Community while at the same time teaching all essential tasks that go hand in hand with such. He strongly believes that this can be achieved by making each and every exercise experience a social, fun, and physically rewarding one.




Greg P. Modd Penultimate People Consulting

As Principal Consultant at Penultimate People Consulting Greg P. Modd has extensive experience overseeing all aspects of HR management for a multitude of industries in both the private and public sectors. Greg started his career in the United States Air Force serving two tours in Iraq supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom and one tour in Afghanistan supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Greg's charisma, leadership style, along with his meticulous attention to detail has led multiple organizations to see increases in business revenue, profit, hiring, and decreases in fraud, waste, abuse, and attrition.


Greg holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Human Resources from the University of Michigan-Dearborn, and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Michigan - Ross School of Business. Greg is currently serving as President-Elect for the Livingston Area Human Resources Association and is a past Chapter President of the Greater Ann Arbor Society for Human Resource Management, and former board President for Michigan Ability Partners. Greg was recognized as a Top HR professional in the state of Michigan in 2014 by the Michigan Council of SHRM.


With over 15 years executing practitioner duties and strategic responsibilities within the HR arena, Greg now leads Penultimate People Consulting and is passionate about partnering with businesses to assist in meeting their business goals.



There is a perception that experience in the military is less relevant in corporate environments. We discuss this perception on this episode of HR is in with Natalie. One recommendation was to use the DD-2214 in addition to a resume. What do you think? Do you have recommendations for Veterans?

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