Mission United empowers veterans as they return home. An estimated 50,000 veterans call Miami-Dade County home*
United Way of Miami-Dade announces Laura Whitfield, USMC Veteran, as its director of Mission United. Committed to veterans’ success, Whitfield brings her own military background and more than 20 years of human resources expertise to Miami from Heart of Florida United Way, where she also led Mission United. In her new role, she is making it a priority to help veterans translate military experience into civilian employment. Launched in 2016, Mission United helps veterans and their families re-acclimate to civilian life in meaningful and supportive ways.
Knowing firsthand the difficulty veterans face in the job market, Whitfield is determined to work with employers and veterans alike to understand how military skills, experiences and accomplishments translate to civilian work – all with the hopes that veterans can secure rewarding employment and continue to live strong and prosperous lives.
“It is imperative that veterans not only find a job to help pay the bills, but an employment opportunity that is meaningful, provides room for growth and can turn into a lifelong career post-military,” Laura Whitfield, director, United Way Mission United, said. “Creating a culture where employers understand and can help expand on the unique skills that veterans possess is one of the keys to helping our veterans thrive as civilians.”
Prior to joining the United Way in Orlando, Whitfield gained valuable experience through program management and strategic planning for two state universities and achieved success as an HR business partner and human capital consultant for several Fortune 500 companies. She has also advised C-level leaders of small businesses and nonprofits. Whitfield joined the military after high school, becoming a Sergeant (E-5). After the military, Whitfield earned her bachelor’s degree in management and Asian studies from University of Maryland Global Campus and certifications in human resources, leadership development and DISC communication styles facilitation. Supporting nonprofits that invest in creating systemic change in the community is also important to Whitfield, as she serves as a board member with Pathlight Home, a Housing First nonprofit organization, among others.
Mission United serves as a single point of entry for veterans to access the help they need while easing the transition to civilian life. By connecting veterans to a coordinated network of community partners, Mission United empowers veterans and their families to lead productive lives in our community. Services include job training and opportunities, affordable housing, legal resources and more. To learn more, please visit www.missionunitedmiami.org or call 305-4-UNITED.