The Vetties - A Veteran’s Day Celebration for our Episode Honorees

The Vetties - A Veteran’s Day Celebration for our Episode Honorees

On Veteran's Day 2023, GCSEN held an event in Poughkeepsie, NY, to celebrate the first season of Veteran's Playbook and honor our episode stars. We held an award ceremony, the Vetties, during which our host Mike Caslin presented each episode star with a trophy and allowed them to speak on stage in front of our 100+ attendees. In this moving ceremony we learned more about the stars and their struggles and triumphs. Once again, we want to say THANK YOU to these brave men and women for their service and for sharing their stories with us.

Read more about each Vetty Awardee below:



Iron Mike Steadman
“IRON” Mike Steadman – Newark, NJ, U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis Graduate, Marine Corps Platoon Commander. Through IRONBOUND Boxing Academy, IRONBOUND Courage Academy, and IRONBOUND Media, Iron Mike and his ventures are changing the lives of young people as well as other veteran entrepreneurs.
Charlie Webb

Charlie Webb – Poughkeepsie, NY, U.S. Army Staff Sergeant. Charlie is passionate about food and community. His venture, Hudson & Packard, offers award-winning Detriot-style pizza. They served free food to first responders and hospitals throughout Covid lockdown.

Andrew Beaudoin – Saranac Lake, NY, U.S. Army Sergeant, Paratrooper. Wounded in Afghanistan, AJ now uses his passion for fishing and the outdoors in his venture, Battle Fish Charters, helping fellow vets to “Stop battling anxiety and battle fish for the day!”


Daryian Rhysing – Pittsfield, MA, U.S. Army Sergeant, Aircraft Electrician. His company, UAT: United Aircraft Technologies, is introducing ground-breaking new technologies, like smart electrical systems for safety, in the aerospace industry, creating good jobs in their community.


Alexander Othmer – Beacon, NY, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy graduate, and U.S. Navy SEAL.  Member of SEAL Team 6- Naval Special Warfare Development Group. Alex is helping other vets heal with the help of dogs, music, nature, and peer support at Guardian Revival, where they provide community services to help vets and first responders.


Patrick Powers – Newport, RI, U.S. Army Deputy Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command Central. Patrick uses Gold Star Sailing, a summer camp for teens who have lost a parent in military service, to help kids heal, bond, and learn the joys and challenges of sailing.


D’Shawn Russell – Raeford, NC, Military Spouse. Raised in a military family, D’Shawn married a U.S. Army soldier. Made a mid-life career change from math teacher to military spouse entrepreneur. With no business experience, she turned her hobby of candle making into a multi-million-dollar business.


Corrie Mays – Cape Cod, MA, Major, U.S. Marines, Weapons Systems Flight Officer, Flight Officer for the “Blue Angels.” Corrie and her sister saved Plum Porch, a landmark local business, from closing down, and built it into the #1 gift shop on the Cape, despite the challenges of Covid.

Cyndy Jones – Cape Cod, MA, Military family, Gold Star Mother. Launched Heroes In Transition in memory of her son, Captain Eric A. Jones, U.S. Marine Corps, who died in 2009 piloting a helicopter on a combat mission in Afghanistan. HIT helps 45,000+ Cape Cod veterans, service members, and their families to strengthen relationships, build community, and provide a pathway to healing.


Nick Bezanson – Westbrook, ME, Major, United States Marine Corps. Nick flew F-18s in San Diego, and C-130s in Okinawa, Japan, and Iraq, and was a flight instructor. He started Vacationland Distributors during his MBA where he discovered a niche for a boutique distributorship focused on the unique craft beer, wine, and cider.


Shawn Moore – Kansas City, MO, Military Spouse, Founder of Caregivers on the Homefront. Prior to becoming a caregiver to her husband who served for 23 years in the U.S. Army, Shawn served as a police officer for 15 years. Shawn is a passionate and powerful advocate for military and veteran caregivers. She is also a director at the Elizabeth Dole Foundation.



 Thanks again to our event sponsors:

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