Florida Economic Development Initiatives - November 1-2, 2023

You are invited to learn about your benefits.

Veterans Affairs Florida Economic Development Initiatives (EDI)

Nov. 1-2, 2023 

Click a button below to learn more or register:

Economic Development Initiatives are events that help the Veteran community learn about their VA benefits and connect with career opportunities.

Economic Development Initiatives are events that help the Veteran community learn about their VA benefits and connect with career opportunities.

The events offer career training and guidance, information about benefits, mental and physical health care options, spouse and caregiver resources, hands-on help filing benefits claims and much more.

Attend the Benefits and Hiring Fair

Learn About
Your Benefits

» Presentations and Benefits Fair booths to help you learn about your VA benefits. 

Meet With a
Claims Processor

» An opportunity to meet with claims processors to check on or to learn to file VA disability claims. 

Find Out About
Veterans Initiatives

» A place to learn more about current employment opportunities, special hiring authorities and career support resources.

Discover
the Details

» An opportunity for spouses and caregivers of Veterans and service members to learn about their benefits and resources.

Receive DOL
Career Training

» DOL VETS workshops that will explain self-marketing techniques, networking and interviewing skills.

Connect With
Job Options

» A place to learn more about current employment opportunities, special hiring authorities and career support resources.

Learn About
Your Benefits

Meet With
a Claims Processor

Find Out About
Veterans Initiatives

Learn From
Presentations

Receive DOL
Career Training

Connect With
Employment Options

This event offers career training and guidance, information about benefits, mental and physical health care options, spouse and caregiver resources, hands-on help filing benefits claims and much more.

Event Registration Coming Soon

Click the button below to register for the event. A new AddEvent registration page will open.

Nov. 1 Schedule of Events

Wednesday Schedule of Events

9-10:30 a.m. – Town Hall
9 a.m.-3 p.m. – Claims Clinic*
9 a.m.-4 p.m. – MDEO Mobile Medical Unit
11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Career Workshop
1-3 p.m. – Spouse, Caregiver and Elderly Care Clinic

*Requires separate registration

Nov. 2 Schedule of Events

Thursday Schedule of Events

9-9:30 a.m. – Opening Ceremonies
9 a.m.-3 p.m. – Claims Clinic*
9 a.m.-4 p.m. – MDEO Mobile Medical Unit
9 a.m.-4 p.m. – Benefits and Hiring Fair
9:30 a.m.-12 p.m. – Stakeholder Roundtables (by invitation only)
3:30-4:00 p.m. – Closing Remarks

*Requires separate registration

Event Partners

Learn how to maximize the use of your earned VA benefits and services. Attend the Benefits Fair, find out about Veterans initiatives, listen to presentations and connect with a claims processor. Presentations will cover topics such as VA benefits, health care and mental health and wellness. 

Schedule of Events Coming Soon

Day One

Tuesday08 Aug 2023

10 a.m.-
4 p.m.

Town Hall and Presentations

The Town Hall will showcase progress made on local Veteran initiatives. Presentations are informational sessions that highlight benefits and resources. (More information about individual presentations is below.)

10-
11 a.m.

Town Hall

The Town Hall will showcase Veteran Benefits Administration, Veterans Health Administration and National Cemetery benefits and initiatives.

11-
11:20 a.m.

PACT ACT Presentation

Frank Wijngaarde, Supervisory Policy Analyst, Outreach, Transition and Economic Development

11:20-
11:35 a.m.

Legacy of Care Transport

Jonathan Jackson, Executive Officer, Legacy of Care Transport

11:35 a.m.-
12:35 p.m.

VA Benefits 101 MLC

VA TAP Benefits Advisor

12:35-
12:50 p.m.

Adult Day Health Program

Patricia Smith, LMSW and Michelle Torzewski, MSN

12:50-
1:35 p.m.

Break

1:35-
1:50 p.m.

Women’s Wellness

Judy Sexton, Woman’s Peer Support Specialist

1:50-
2:05 p.m.

Caregiver Support Program

Stephanie Anzalone, LCSW, Program Manager

2:05-
2:20 p.m.

Veterans Crisis Line

Dr. April Foreman, VCL Deputy Director of Technology and Innovation

2:20-
2:35 p.m.

WNY Behavioral Health Spectrum of Care

Dr. Barbara Nelson, LCSW, Chief of Mental Health

2:35-
2:50 p.m.

Veterans One-Stop Center of WNY Presentation

Daniel Arnold, Director of Veteran Engagement

2:50-
3:05 p.m.

Mental Health Services, Vet Center

Mike Shurmatz, LMSW Readjustment Counseling Therapist

3:05-
3:10 p.m.

Break

Day Two

Wednesday09 Aug 2023

10 a.m.-
5 p.m.

Benefits Fair

Learn about the benefits to which you are entitled, such as mental and physical health care, education, employment transition assistance, home loan options, assistance in starting a business, independent living services and more.

10 a.m.-
5 p.m.

PACT Act and Claims Clinic

Connect with a claims representative to learn more about claims related to the PACT Act, check claim status or receive insight into next steps in filing a VA claim for service-connected conditions.

August 8, 2023

Town Hall and Presentations
  • 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Town Hall and Presentations

The Town Hall will showcase progress made on local Veteran initiatives. Presentations are informational sessions that highlight benefits and resources. (More information about individual presentations is below.)

Town Hall
  • 10-11 a.m.

Town Hall

The Town Hall will showcase Veteran Benefits Administration, Veterans Health Administration and National Cemetery benefits and initiatives.

Presentations
  • 11 a.m.-3:10 p.m.

Presentations

Time Presentation Speaker
11–11:05 a.m. Introduction of Presentations Mike Jones, Master of Ceremonies*
11:05–11:20 a.m. PACT ACT Presentation Frank Wijngaarde, Supervisory Policy Analyst, Outreach, Transition and Economic Development
11:20–11:35 a.m. Legacy of Care Transport Jonathan Jackson, Executive Officer, Legacy of Care Transport
11:35 a.m.–12:35 p.m. VA Benefits 101 MLC VA TAP Benefits Advisor
12:35–12:50 p.m. Adult Day Health Program Patricia Smith, LMSW and Michelle Torzewski, MSN
12:50–1:35 p.m. Break Break
1:35–1:50 p.m. Women’s Wellness Judy Sexton, Women’s Peer Support Specialist
1:50–2:05 p.m. Caregiver Support Program Stephanie Anzalone, LCSW, Program Manager
2:05–2:20 p.m. Veterans Crisis Line Dr. April Foreman, VCL Deputy Director of Technology and Innovation
2:20–2:35 p.m. WNY Behavioral Health Spectrum of Care Dr. Barbara Nelson, LCSW, Chief of Mental Health
2:35–2:50 p.m. Veterans One-Stop Center of WNY Daniel Arnold, Director of Veteran Engagement
2:50–3:05 p.m. Mental Health Services, Vet Center Mike Shurmatz, LMSW Readjustment Counseling Therapist
3:05–3:10 p.m. Break Break
*Master of Ceremonies to quickly introduce each panelist.

August 9, 2023

Benefits Fair
  • 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Benefits Fair

Learn about the benefits to which you are entitled, such as mental and physical health care, education, employment transition assistance, home loan options, assistance in starting a business, independent living services and more.

PACT Act and Claims Clinic
  • 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

PACT Act and Claims Clinic

Connect with a claims representative to learn more about claims related to the PACT Act, check claim status or receive insight into next steps in filing a VA claim for service-connected conditions.

PACT Act and Claims Clinic

Receive personalized support from a qualified claims specialist. During your appointment you can learn more about the claims process and PACT Act benefit options to which you may be entitled, or find out information regarding the current status of your existing claim.

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(Do not provide personally identifiable information in this section.)

Location

Walden Galleria Mall 
(Next to the Lord and Taylor Store)
1 Walden Galleria
Buffalo, NY 14225

Testimonials

5/5

“Amazing event! The presentations were great!”

"These resources are a good source of information for Veterans and their families!"

"...the presenters were very prepared and presented their material in an excellent fashion."

Testimonials From Past EDI Attendees

“Attending an EDI event connects you with key benefits and services that can help you find success in civilian life. Whether you are a transitioning service member, a Veteran or the family member who supports someone who has served, EDIs are for you.”

Testimonial from Joshua Jacobs
Senior Advisor for Policy Performing the Delegable Duties of the Under Secretary for Benefits

Past Event Images

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