Honoring Our Veteran Alumni Elite

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It could be a brief visit, phone call, or email. Whether it’s for a quick update or just to say “hello,” former clients are staying in touch with staff at the Veterans Programs. They are staying in touch because they want to share all the good they have been experiencing through a life of recovery.

Over time, through these casual check-ins, these vets have become role models to clients currently in treatment. They have been staying sober year after year and, while doing so, achieving their dreams.

To celebrate these successful examples of recovery, the three veterans programs host an annual Veterans Black Tie Dinner: A Celebration for Veteran Alumni Elite in 2012. At the event, the programs honor their Veteran Alumni Elite, individuals who have completed substance use treatment and maintained recovery for five continuous years. Following the occasion plaques bearing the honorees’ names are hung on the walls of the three Veterans Programs. They serve as a reminder and a goal to current clients.









This year the 9th Annual Black Tie Dinner took place on Wednesday, October 25, in Manhattan. Four graduates of the Ed Thompson and 43rd Street Veterans Programs received Veteran Alumni Elite awards. They included:

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  • Derrick Keys (43rd Street)
  • Wayne Malone (43rd Street)
  • Anthony Shaw (Ed Thompson)
  • Kevin Johnson (Ed Thompson)

In addition, two staff members were recognized for having gone above and beyond their roles to ensure the success of both the clients and fellow staff members.

This year’s Veterans Staff Awards went to:

  • Kevin Small, Outreach Supervisor, Residential Admissions
  • Quetcy Alexander Young, Program Director of Ellenville Residential Treatment Program

Veteran Partner Awards recognize the invaluable contributions of partnering organizations that donate their services to enhance the veterans’ treatment experience. This year’s awardees were:

Read about these and other partners of the Veterans Programs.


At the center of the event was a special honor called the Veteran Command Award. This year, the programs decided to bestow the honor to Tim Cochrane, Senior VP of American Corporate Partners, a national nonprofit that helps returning veterans find their next career. Mr. Cochrane is a member of the Samaritan Daytop Foundation Board and a passionate veterans advocate. A veteran of the U.S. Marines, he was recognized for his commitment to the vets through his work at ACP and as a volunteering Board Member.

Mitchell Netburn, President & CEO of Samaritan Daytop Village, presented the award to Mr. Cochrane: “Tim knows well how meaningful and productive work can transform a veteran’s outlook on life. And, as a person in recovery, he understands how a full-time job can help a person stay in recovery from substance use.”

We were fortunate to have had several elected officials and government representatives join us for the evening including:

* State Senator Luis Sepulveda and NY State Assembly 79th District Leader Gene Edwards Jr. who presented a proclamation to Tim Cochrane

* State Senator Nathalia Fernandez

* Former Executive Director of the NYC Mayor's Office of Nonprofit Services Karen Ford












George Hobson, a combat veteran who served eight years in the United States Air Force received this year’s Veteran Legend Award. Mr. Hobson is a Real Estate Professional with Sotheby’s International Realty. A native of Brooklyn, he is also fluent in Spanish and has a working knowledge of numerous other languages. Mr. Hobson was unable to attend this year’s function. We wish him well as he recovers.