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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 veteran of the war in Afghanistan. He is an award-winning writer whose essays and short fiction have appeared in Time, The American Interest, Foreign Policy, The New York Times, The Delmarva Review, JMWW, the Little Patuxent Review, Prime Number, and Riverlit. Three of Ron’s essays have been listed as notable in Best American Essays (2012, 2014, and 2015). 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. Ron is a faculty member at the University of Maryland.

Jerri Bell. Instructor/editor. Jerri Bell retired from the Navy in 2008; her assignments included antisubmarine warfare in the Azores Islands, sea duty on USS Mount Whitney and HMS Sheffield, and attaché duty at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, Russia. Her fiction has been published in a variety of journals and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize; her nonfiction has been published in journals and newspapers, and on blogs. She and former Marine Tracy Crow are the co-authors of It’s My Country Too: Women’s Military Stories from the American Revolution to Afghanistan, forthcoming from University of Nebraska Press/Potomac Books in 2017. 

Dario DiBattista. Instructor/editor. Dario DiBattista is the editor of the anthology Retire the Colors: Veterans & Civilians on Iraq & Afghanistan. His work has appeared in Washingtonian Magazine, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Connecticut Review, [Pank], Mic.com, and many other publications.  Additionally, he’s been profiled in the New York Times and has been a commentator on NPR, SiriusXM, and for the BBC.

Jim Mathews, Instructor/editor. James Mathews holds a Master of Arts in Writing from the Johns Hopkins University. He teaches fiction at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda, Maryland where he also serves on the Board of Directors. He is a retired Chief Master Sergeant with twenty-seven 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. More recently, his short story “Many Dogs Have Died Here” was included in the Best American Mystery Stories of 2015. His website is www.jamesmathewsonline.com

Peter Molin, Mentor Program Coordinator. Peter Molin is a retired U.S. Army infantry officer who taught for many years in the Department of English and Philosophy at the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY.  In 2008-2009, he deployed to Khost Province, Afghanistan, where he served as an adviser to the Afghan National Army.  During his Army career, Molin also deployed to Kosovo and the Sinai, Egypt, and served three years forwardly-deployed near the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) in South Korea. He blogs about contemporary war writing, art, and movies at Time Now: The Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in Art, Film, and Literature (acolytesofwar.com) and has published in scholarly journals on both war writing and his academic specialty of 19th-century American Literature. The holder of an M.A. from the University of California-Berkeley and a PhD from Indiana University, Molin currently teaches in the writing program at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ. 

Board of Directors: 

Christopher Dorval. Mr. Dorval most recently worked as a senior advisor to Secretary Hillary Clinton; his 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 reach us via snail mail here:

Veterans Writing Project
8653 16th St #8206
Silver Spring MD 20910