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IAVA Announces New Staff with Expertise in Military, Government And Non-Profits

NEW YORK, NY (March 16, 2017) – Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), the largest non-profit, non-partisan organization representing post-9/11 veterans and their families, today announced the appointment of Melissa Bryant as Director of Political and Intergovernmental Affairs and Sean Ullman as Chief Development Officer. Bryant joined the team to support IAVA’s growing Washington, D.C.-based policy operations and Ullman will lead and execute IAVA’s development and fundraising efforts.

As a former Army Captain and Operation Iraqi Freedom combat veteran, Melissa Bryant has an extensive record of public service as an intelligence officer and in the civil service prior to joining IAVA. A plans, policy, and operations expert with 15 combined years of experience in the federal government, Melissa has served in key leadership positions with the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Joint Staff, the United States Military Academy, and Army Intelligence. She was successful in building “coalitions of the willing” to advance operational and strategic objectives while developing and implementing plans and policy for the defense and intelligence communities.

“Melissa’s personal experience in the military and defense sector of the federal government gives her the tools she needs to best advocate for our nation’s post-9/11 veterans,” said IAVA Chief of Staff Allison Jaslow. “She is a tremendous asset to our growing, dynamic policy team and we look forward to the energy and knowledge she brings to the table.”

As the Political and Intergovernmental Affairs Director for IAVA, Melissa develops the annual policy agenda and advocacy campaigns in collaboration with IAVA leadership and leads IAVA’s engagement with other Veterans Service Organizations, advocacy organizations, the White House and government departments such as Defense and Veterans Affairs.

Melissa is an ROTC Distinguished Military Graduate and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science cum laude from Hampton University, is an alumna of Howard University School of Law, and also holds a Master of Arts in Policy Management from Georgetown University.

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Sean Ullman has extensive experience connecting socially conscious corporations and philanthropically minded individuals with nonprofit organizations that align with their values. Sean joins IAVA with a strong background in fundraising leadership for large respected organizations including the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity International, and New York University. 

“Sean’s passion has ignited our team at an historic time for IAVA and our members,” Jaslow continued. “His deep understanding of the needs of high-impact non-profit organizations like IAVA makes him an invaluable asset to our team and will fuel our mission.  Sean’s potential to help us extend our reach in the world of advocacy and expand the critical services we provide the veteran community is endless.”

As Chief Development Officer, Sean is responsible for the day-to-day management and operations of the Resources Staff. Sean is also charged with developing strategic alliances with American companies that are comprehensive, integrated, and based on shared values to the veterans community.

Sean earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and is a proud Gator. He also received a Master of Business Administration from Georgia Tech.

IAVA is headquartered in New York and has staff in California and Washington, D.C., which includes a mix of veterans and civilians who represent diverse areas of expertise and backgrounds. All IAVA staff demonstrate a deeply personal and professional commitment to the veteran community.

Note to media: Email press@iava.org or call 212-982-9699 to speak with IAVA CEO and Founder Paul Rieckhoff or IAVA leadership.

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (www.IAVA.org) is the leading post-9/11 veteran empowerment organization (VEO) with the most diverse and rapidly growing membership in America. As a non-profit founded in 2004, IAVA’s mission is to connect, unite and empower post-9/11 veterans. Celebrating its 12th year anniversary, IAVA has connected more than 1.2 million veterans with resources and community, and provided more than 7,300 veterans with personalized support from IAVA’s Master’s level social workers.