THE COMMIT FOUNDATION | PURSUING PURPOSE FOR US VETERANS
By Kristy Simmons and Cara Valentino
As we reflect this month on our nation’s first leaders and their persistent pursuit of freedom for all, we’d like to pause to recognize the work of one of our clients, The COMMIT Foundation, a non-profit that supports America’s top tier servicemembers and veterans in finding personal and professional purpose after military service.
In short — COMMIT is dedicated to helping those who pursue our national freedom to pursue their personal purpose and passions.
What sets COMMIT apart in the military transition space is that, by design, their focus isn’t solely on statistics. They recognize that there is a strategic difference between the outcomes of a question like, “How many veterans did you place in jobs this year?”, versus their mission to connect veterans to a supportive professional network that helps them translate their skills into a meaningful career in any sector.
Where COMMIT sees statistics as more meaningful is in results: more than 99% of their program participants feel confident about their military to civilian career transition, evidence that COMMIT’s distinctly differentiating focus on quality of touch, rather than quantity touched, has significant impacts.
COMMIT’s visionary founder, Anne Meree Craig, is a leader whose aim is to create a sense of meaning, purpose, and joy for service members entering the professional civilian world. She achieves this through another differentiator in the veteran service space, COMMIT’s One-on-One Transition Assistance program.
While many veteran programs focus on group communications or lectures, Anne Meree feels that one-on-one, tailored partnership throughout the transition from military to civilian is key. As she states, she believes “30 minutes of quality dialogue can change a person’s trajectory and therefore forever change their lives.” This mindset has created scores of serendipitous connections over the past seven years, resulting in thousands of successful and happy servicemembers building out a now extensive network in the private sector.
Like Anne Meree, we at The Clearing hold true to our mission statement: “We believe in, inspire, and outfit people to have meaningful lives and to make extraordinary contributions to causes that matter.” As a result of this steadfast belief, when our Director of Consulting, Cara Valentino, learned about COMMIT’s work, she asked to be a part of it, understanding the direct correlation between this kind of focus and reducing the veteran suicide rate.
In 2016, Cara offered pro bono support to design a leadership session as part of the Transition Mentoring Workshop. Now a standard part of the Mentoring Workshops, the one-day “Pursuing Your Purpose” session helps to widen the aperture for servicemembers, offering them new tools and frameworks to understand the expansive personal and professional possibilities that exist outside of their military careers.
Thanks to the outstanding work of all those at COMMIT, the organization has doubled in size since we first worked with them in 2016. And today, multiple facilitators – including others from The Clearing – lead Mentoring Workshops all over the country.
To us, this idea of pursuing your purpose means offering all that you have in service of creating something better together.
This Fourth of July, we acknowledge COMMIT and all those who support causes that matter.