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About Us

RC TeachingPhoto: A VWP Seminar in 2011. Credit: Jacqueline Hames, Soldiers Magazine.

Our Staff:

Ron Capps. The founder and director of the VWP, Ron served 25 years in the Army and Army Reserve and is a combat veteran of Afghanistan. He has been a contributor to Time Magazine’s Battleland blog, The American Interest, and to Foreign Policy; his literary writing has been featured in JMWW, The New York Times, The Delmarva Review, The Little Patuxent Review, Prime Number, and Riverlit. The Washington Post called his 2009 essay Back From the Brink, “stunningly good.” His essay The French Lieutenant’s iPod won first prize for creative non-fiction in Press 53′s 2011 Open Awards competition, and his 2011 essay Yellow was listed as a Notable in Best American Essays of 2012. He has been a featured speaker on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered, PRI’s The World, Pacifica Radio, the BBC World Service and has been a consultant to TimeRolling Stone, and PBS Frontline. His book, Writing War: A Guide to Telling Your Own Story serves as the curriculum for VWP seminars and workshops. His memoir, Seriously Not All Right: Five Wars in Ten Years, is published by Schaffner Press.

Jerri Bell. Instructor. Jerri Bell served twenty years in the Navy. Her assignments included sea duty on USS Mount Whitney and HMS Sheffield, and shore duty as an assistant naval attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. She is a graduate of the M.A. In Writing Program at The Johns Hopkins University; her fiction has won prizes in the West Virginia Writers’ annual competition, and her nonfiction has been published in Southern Maryland ParentLine, the Charleston Gazette-Mail, and on the Maryland Humanities Council History Day blog. She is currently working on a book about a woman whose daughter, adopted in Ukraine, has a severe form of mental illness

Dario DiBattista, Instructor. Iraq War combat veteran Dario DiBattista is an outstanding graduate of the M.A. in Creative Writing Program at The Johns Hopkins University. His work has appeared in The Washingtonian, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Connecticut Review, Three Quarter Review, World Hum, and he’s been featured in The New York Times, Urbanite Magazine, and on The Marc Steiner Radio Show. He blogs for many websites, most notably, http://www.notalone.com, which is a resource website for returning veterans. And he teaches writing at The George Washington University and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center at Bethesda for The Veterans Writing Project, and as an adjunct professor at the Community College of Baltimore County.

Jim Mathews, Instructor. James Mathews holds a Master of Arts in Writing from the Johns Hopkins University and teaches fiction at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda, Maryland.  He is also a Chief Master Sergeant with twenty-five years of military experience in both the U.S. Air Force and the District of Columbia Air National Guard. He has been deployed overseas numerous times, including two tours to Southwest Asia in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (in 2003 and 2006). His fiction has appeared in many literary journals, including the Northwest Review, Carolina Quarterly, The Wisconsin Review and The Florida Review.  In 2008, the University of North Texas published his collection of military-themed stories called Last Known Position which won the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction.  His website is www.jamesmathewsonline.com

Board of Directors: 

Christopher Dorval. Mr. Dorval most recently worked as a senior advisor to Secretary Hillary Clinton; previous government service was at the White House for President Clinton. He currently is the President of Dorval Strategies, a communication and crisis management business. Most importantly, he is the son of two WWII veterans: his mother was a US psychiatric nurse stationed in England; his father a fighter pilot and POW.

Dan Flanagan. Mr. Flanagan is a 1965 graduate of the United States Naval Academy and two-tour Vietnam veteran. He served on the Executive Committee of the Council of Viet Nam Veterans from 1977 through 1979 until its formation as the Vietnam Veterans of America and was a founding board member of the U. S. Navy Memorial Foundation in Washington, DC. He lives in the Washington DC area and maintains a national infrastructure investment consulting practice.

Carole Florman. Ms. Florman is the daughter of a WWII veteran and the wife of an Afghanistan veteran. She has worked in the Departments of Justice, Treasury and Interior, as a staffer on Capitol Hill and as a Vice President of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. She was communications director for the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies for the inauguration of President Obama.

Ron Koshes, MD. Dr. Koshes served in the U.S. Army medical corps and is the former president of the Society of American Military Psychiatrists. He is the author of eight books including Kent-Jolie: A Green Fairy Tale and How We Think: Understanding the Stories We Tell Each Other. 

Jeff Stein. Mr. Stein spent decades as a journalist including long stays with Congressional Quarterly and the Washington Post. He served as an intelligence case officer in the U.S. Army in Vietnam and is the author of the acclaimed Vietnam War exposé A Murder in Wartime.

Contact:

You can reach us via email by writing to our director, Ron Capps, at ron@veteranswriting.org.

You can write to us via snail mail at:
Veterans Writing Project
6508 Barnaby St NW
Washington DC 20015.

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