Former Navy Spouse Draws from Life Experience for Operation Homefront Mission
After her husband separated from the Navy, Ebony found herself missing the military community. She began looking for positions that supported military families in the Washington, D.C., area, where her family decided to live. After coming across a position as the Director of Special Events for Operation Homefront, Ebony discovered the organization would be hosting the first lady—Michelle Obama—for the Military Child of the Year Awards the following day. Yes, Ebony was interviewed for the position by a team that was also in the throes of event planning. Ebony was sold on the job, and she was hired!
Fast forward 11 years and Ebony is now Senior Director of Corporate Partnerships, leading a team that supports Operation Homefront’s impactful and often life-changing programs by activating support from the business community. She connects the dots for generous corporate partners so that they can make a true impact on military families and achieve their philanthropic goals. From direct experience with her husband’s service or finding inspiration from her grandfather’s service as a Tuskegee Airman and her slew of relatives— aunts, uncles, cousins, and in-laws currently serving in the Army, Air Force, and Coast Guard–Ebony finds much to draw from for current military insight.
Ebony and the development team truly enjoy telling the OH story and how our partners are making a tangible impact.
“The corporate team works extremely hard to connect donors to great family stories and testimonials, boots-on-the-ground engagement opportunities, and collaborative marketing,” she said. “This hard work continues to pay off with annual returning corporate partnerships as well as year-over-year partnership growth.”
As a military spouse who lived in the Washington, D.C., area on a Navy petty officer third class’s salary, Ebony knows firsthand how challenging it can be to stay financially afloat.
“If I can have a hand in helping military families not struggle to get by,” she said, “I will continue to do my part to help them thrive in the communities they have worked so hard to protect!”
One of her favorite memories occurred when Ebony was the Director of Special Events.
“I was able to connect the Coast Guard Military Child of the Year Award® recipient with her father, who was unable to travel for health reasons, via the gala’s live feed,” Ebony said. “Previously, we had not included a live feed, and that year, our media partner graciously agreed to donate the service. Soon afterward, I learned the father had passed away and that this connection was a truly special moment the family was able to share,” Ebony said.
Ebony is inspired by her colleagues.
“I have never worked where everyone is totally committed to the company’s core values,” she said. “I have worked in the non-profit space since 2001 but being at Operation Homefront has truly illustrated how important a cohesive and mission-focused team is to organizational success.”
For those military families needing help, Ebony has this message:
“If you are a military family in need, please make the call for help! There is such strength in asking for assistance and allowing yourself to take it. To companies that want to make an impact on the lives of military families, Operation Homefront is here to work with you. We can help you tell your philanthropic story to your customers. We can help your employees feel more deeply connected to the communities in which they work.”
Ebony is pleased with the donor base she has cultivated but sees a continuing opportunity for more partners to keep up with the ever-changing needs of military families.
“Every Operation Homefront team member works diligently to help build strong, stable, and secure military families. We are truly honored to do this work alongside a tremendously generous American donor base. But there is much more work to do, so please consider donating or connecting Operation Homefront to like-minded corporate entities so that we may continue our vital mission,” Ebony said.