Geri Lynn is a Military Spouse & Caregiver to her husband Robert. An expert in Military Culture, she has dedicated her Career to assisting others in understanding the uniqueness associated with the military way of life both during and after service. Serving as the Veterans Service Coordinator at Union Institute & University she helped develop the university's inaugural Military & Veteran Program. Her Doctoral Dissertation, was dedicated to raising awareness to the educational needs of Military Spouses, Caregivers, and dependent children.
Geri Lynn is an advocate for military families and uses her voice to help raise awareness to the difficulties associated with transitioning military personnel and their families with employment and educational guidance. She also is the voice of those families who are impacted by both visible and invisible wounds. Through her work she hopes to merge the military and civilian communities through raising awareness to the needs of these families.
Geri Lynn currently sits on the My Veteran Community Committee which is dedicated to serving the veteran community in the Dayton region. Enjoys volunteering with the USO!
She also served on the Southern Ohio Council on Higher Education Veterans Committee from 2015-2018. Serving in the role of Vice Chair from 2017-2018. In addition, from 2015-2017 she was a member of the Tri State Veteran Community Alliance's Veteran's Education Committee.
Nicole lives in Union, KY. She was born and raised in Ashland, OH. She moved south from Northern Ohio after receiving her Master’s Degree from Tiffin University in 2002. She has been very blessed to be able to work in higher education for almost 15 years. Her love for helping students with making college decisions has led her to the path of working in enrollment. Currently Nicole is the Senior Director of Enrollment at Union Institute & University. She believes in the power of education and loves being in a work environment that wants to help others. Nicole loves that Union Institute has a mission that she also holds true to, which is to Engage, Enlighten and Empower adult students, and that mission is what Nicole and her enrollment team do daily. She feels that leadership is the key to keeping a work environment running in a smooth manner. One of Nicole’s favorite books is “The Heart Led Leader” by Tommy Spaulding. She believes that leading from the heart means leading with compassion and care for your coworkers. This mantra is what has made Nicole a loved leader at her places of employment. There isn’t hardly a weekly meeting that doesn’t go by that Nicole doesn’t like to quote from this book to her team. She was lucky enough to experience that method of leading from a Vietnam Veteran, Gregory Hitt, who was also one of Nicole’s first bosses. He brought in his seven army core values to his mostly civilian team daily and Nicole never forgot that.
Nicole came from a very loving family who decided to take a risk on her in the 70’s by adopting her. She was biracial child; age one, adopted into their all-white family. She realized at a young age that not everyone will support your moral decisions. Her family heard from neighborhood friends and even religious leaders that maybe they should “stick to their own kind” when they made the news of the adoption, but Nicole’s parents were determined to give her a good home. In that upbringing, she could become an athlete and decided to take on distance running and basketball. Nicole later was able to keep that love of sports and take it to the college level where she also received her undergraduate degree from Tiffin University with a concentration in Sports Management; she was also a two-sport athlete and then a graduate assistant coach. She still enjoys sports and has ran a full marathon with her husband Erik and competed in a Tough Mudder competition. Erik has also introduced Nicole to the love of golf since Erik was a golf athlete in college. Nicole and Erik share two beautiful daughters, Chloe age 7 and Madison age 3.
She met Geri three years ago at Union Institute & University and had the pleasure of becoming her supervisor. Geri was Union’s Veterans Coordinator and Geri very quickly introduced Nicole into the world of military life and the up and down obstacles of being a caregiver. Nicole fell in love with Geri’s passion and was determined to learn more about the military family. In doing that, Nicole would attend military led conferences with Geri, and daily would learn about challenges in the military culture. Much like Nicole’s recognition to her upbringing and the sacrifice that her parents made, it was very evident that others did not recognize the moral decisions and sacrifices that that caregivers would have to make daily to hold the family together. When Geri brought the idea of Operation Mission Insight to Nicole and explained their mission of Educating, Empowering and Encouraging the understanding of Military Culture, Nicole once again knew she needed to be a part of it. Operation Mission Insight is building a wonderful support program dedicated to assisting business, educators and organizations into a better understanding into the military culture just like Geri did for her three years ago, and she is excited to spread the passion.
Meet Emily! She was just 5 years of age when her father left to serve in Operation Iraqi Freedom and turned 7 years old days after he returned home. Growing up, Emily experienced the medical challenges associated with her father’s service; Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury and the numerous medical ailments that accompanied the two signature wounds of war.
Emily is a 2016 graduate of Middletown Christian Schools and is double majoring in Psychological Science and Applied Social Research at Miami University of Ohio with a minor in Community Based Leadership. She will be graduating in 2019 and plans on continuing her studies in a Master’s Program at The Ohio State University. Through her experiences as a Military Dependent Child and her pursuit of Psychological studies Emily looks forward to working with and supporting military families.
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