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Dreamforce to Feature Cutting-Edge Veterans Service Organization

IAVA leverages new technology to better serve post-9/11 veterans

SAN FRANCISCO (September 14, 2015) – Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America’s (IAVA) Founder and CEO Paul Rieckhoff will present at two keynote events at this week’s Dreamforce conference, highlighting the Post-9/11 veterans organization’s focus on leveraging cutting-edge technologies to support its members. The conference, the largest software event in the world, is presented by Salesforce, a platform IAVA relies on to build and empower its community of veterans and connect them to vital resources.

“Since its inception nearly 11 years ago, IAVA was envisioned as a forward thinking, digitally savvy organization that would reflect the sensibilities of a new generation of veterans. Today IAVA continues to advance our in-person and digital programs and leverage recent technology through the Salesforce platforms,” said Rieckhoff. “Salesforce has been an absolute game changer when it comes to building our community. We will continue to utilize Salesforce systems as the backbone of everything we do.”

On Wed., Sept. 16 at 10:30 a.m., Rieckhoff will present the Community Cloud Keynote address, “Transform Your Business With Community Cloud,” held at Moscone West on the 3rd Floor. Rieckhoff will also be interviewed on the Dreamforce Mainstage before the keynote address of Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, 5 p.m. at Moscone South Halls ABC.

IAVA Chief Digital Products Officer Chris Zezza will also serve as one of three panelists during the breakout session, “Community Engagement: Best Practices from Two Nonprofits Who Do It Well.” Held on Tues., Sept. 15 at 4:00 p.m. in the Metreon AMC Theaters, Theater 13, the session will illustrate the non-profit communities innovative uses of the Salesforce Communities Platform.

In his session, Zezza will highlight the online custom events system built by IAVA to allow easy access to nationwide gatherings known as “VetTogethers.” Additionally, Zezza will discuss the integration of IAVA’s web-based community, “myIAVA”, with the organization’s Rapid Response Referral Program (RRRP). Since the establishment of the RRRP program, IAVA has helped more than 5,000 veterans access the New GI Bill, find doctors and legal support, access emergency housing and financial assistance, partner with mentors for career guidance, connect to mental health treatment and more.

Zezza is also participating in the panel, “Communities: Connecting Citizens and Governments Across America,” on Sept. 17 at 11:30 a.m., focused on the emerging new model of governance that is taking advantage of evolving technologies. IAVA is participating to show how nonprofits are building the next generation platforms that allow citizens and government employees to self organize and address problems in a collaborative way.

IAVA is a recognized leader in the nonprofit space in social and digital innovation. Through such tools as and The Wait We Carry IAVA has connected 1.2 million veterans with resources and links to their community.

About Dreamforce: Dreamforce brings together thought leaders, industry pioneers, and thousands of their peers for four high-energy days of fun, inspiration, networking, and giving back. With over 1,500 sessions and thousands of live solutions from the world’s largest cloud ecosystem, Dreamforce has tailored content specific to industry, role, and company size.

About Paul Rieckhoff, IAVA Founder and CEO: IAVA is led by Founder and CEO Paul Rieckhoff, who served as an Army First Lieutenant and infantry rifle platoon leader in Iraq. A nationally recognized authority on the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and a broad range of issues affecting troops, veterans and their families, Rieckhoff has appeared on hundreds of television and radio programs. His recent appearances include: NBC’s “Nightly News,” ABC’s “World News With Charles Gibson,” CBS’s “The Early Show” and “Dr. Phil Show,” PBS’s “Tavis Smiley,” “The Charlie Rose Show,” and “NewsHour with Jim Lehrer,” CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360,” MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show,” HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher,” and numerous NPR programs. Rieckhoff was recently inducted into the Global Ashoka Fellowship in recognition of his innovation and entrepreneurship on behalf of new veterans.

About Chris Zezza, IAVA Chief Digital Products Officer: As Chief Digital Products Officer, Zezza is responsible for overseeing IAVA’s Digital Products Division, which is responsible for IAVA’s website and other web properties, their Salesforce database, and their online community for veterans, “myIAVA”. Zezza comes with an extensive background in technology and nonprofit work, most recently working at The Climate Group, an international NGO set up to accelerate the transition to the low carbon economy. Before the Climate Group, he managed computer systems at National Semiconductor, Cingular Wireless in Puerto Rico, and the Strang Cancer Prevention Center. Zezza holds a BFA in Acting from Marymount Manhattan College and is a Salesforce Certified Administrator.

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