2018 Annual Report

2018 Annual Report

Our mission

We serve our nation by honoring our defenders, veterans, first responders, their families and those in need. We do this by creating and supporting unique programs designed to entertain, educate, inspire, strengthen and build communities.


Founder and Chairman Gary Sinise


CEO Gen. (Ret.) Robin Rand

from our founder

My Friends,
As I reflect on the last year and the meteoric growth of Gary Sinise Foundation programs and initiatives that have impacted the lives of our nation’s defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need, I think about how far we’ve come since I began this journey eight years ago in June 2011. What we’ve been able to accomplish is a testament to the hard work and common purpose all of us at the foundation share and strive to achieve each and every day we come to work.

from our chief executive officer

A year has gone by since I transitioned from serving our country for more than 40 years as an officer in the United States Air Force to donning a new uniform and serving a new mission as CEO of the Gary Sinise Foundation. It’s an honor to come to work every day to support our nation’s defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need.


Through R.I.S.E., we’re building specially adapted smart homes for our most severely wounded heroes. We’re also providing home modifications, mobility devices, and adapted vehicles to our injured, wounded, ill, and/or aging heroes. More



We’re constructing one-of-a-kind specially adapted smart homes for our nation’s most severely wounded veterans. These 100% mortgage-free homes ease the daily challenges faced by these heroes and their families who sacrifice alongside them. We’re helping restore their self-reliance and independence. More

Icon: Smart Homes


wounded heroes moved into their new specially adapted smart homes


R.I.S.E. recipient U.S. Army (Ret.) CPT Nick Vogt, 2018.


U.S. Army (Ret.) Sergeant First Class Tara Hutchinson’s Home Dedication, 2018.


R.I.S.E. recipient U.S. Army (Ret.) SSG Bobby Dove and his family, 2018.


2018 R.I.S.E. recipient USMC (Ret.) Cpl Joshua Brubaker, 2018.


hero spotlight: usmc staff sergeant brandon dodson

On his fifth and final deployment to Afghanistan in August 2014, USMC Staff Sergeant Brandon Dodson was operating in a remote village when he stepped on a hidden pressure plate improvised explosive device (IED). The explosion resulted in the loss of both his legs above the knee and became a turning point in his and his family’s lives. Brandon’s specially adapted smart home was built in Vista, California and dedicated to him and his family in May.

“Gary has a nice thing that he always says... ‘we can never do enough but we can always do more’ and honestly this [smart home] is the physical embodiment of doing more.”

--USMC (Ret.) SSGT Brandon Dodson


Many wounded heroes lack the means to update their homes and customize their transportation to suit their individual needs. We’re providing our injured, wounded, ill and/or aging heroes with the resources they need to regain their mobility and independence. More

Icon: Smart Homes


homes modified or retrofitted for defenders in need

Icon: Adapted Vehicles


adapted vehicles provided to improve everyday life

Icon: Mobility Devices


mobility devices provided to deserving heroes


Life can change in an instant, especially for our nation’s defenders. Our duty as citizens is to ensure these families stay strong through hardships by offering our complete support before, during, and after the battle. More

relief + resiliency


Year-round and nationwide, we’re serving children and families of fallen military heroes.We are committed to finding new and exciting ways to bring joy and happiness to these families. More


Snowball Express Walt DisneyWorld Resort trip, 2018.


Snowball Express Walt DisneyWorld Resort trip, 2018.


Snowball Express concert, 2018.


Snowball Express Remembrance Garden, 2018.

relief + resiliency


The heroic spirit displayed by our wounded service members through rehabilitation is an inspiration. Our Invincible Spirit Festivals celebrate the courage not only of these heroes but their families and caregivers as well. More


Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band playing For Sunbelt Rentals in Washington D.C., 2018.


Attendees celebrating Father’s Day with Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band at Hotel Del Coronado, 2018.


Gary Sinise Foundation Ambassador, Chef Robert Irvine, attending an ISF, 2018.


ISF, Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC) 2018.

highlight: naval medical center san diego

In February the Gary Sinise Foundation hosted an Invincible Spirit Festival at Naval Medical Center San Diego where recovering marines, sailors, and their families were treated to an exciting day featuring bbq served by Chef Robert Irvine, a classic car show, rock wall, and face painting.

relief + resiliency


Honor. Gratitude. Rock & Roll. That’s the mission of every Lt. Dan Band concert. There’s something for everyone as the thirteen-member group covers hits from every genre in their explosive live show. More

Icon: LTDB Concerts


concerts (including 3 ISFs) performed for America’s heroes & their loved ones


ltdb, Walter Reed , 2018


Gary Sinise & the Lt. Dan Band, ltdb, United States Naval Medical Center, 2018.


Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band playing at Hotel Del Coronado, 2018.


LTDB, Snowball Express 2018.

highlight: napa valley concert

In April 2018 Napa Valley first responders and their families were honored and recognized for their heroism and sacrifices made during the devastating wildfires that broke out in the region in October 2017.

hero spotlight: andrew bozeman

“I never thought that I would hit a point in my life where I would think about doing harm to myself.” Retired Marine Corps Sergeant, Andrew Bozeman, had spent nearly a decade in the Marines with two deployments under his belt since 2004. He enlisted in the military after graduating high school in 2001 and over the years suffered multiple concussions while training and during overseas deployments. His first two marriages fell apart and he was denied reenlistment after being passed on promotion to Staff Sergeant. He planned to commit suicide on March 30, 2013, the same day Gary Sinise and The Lt. Dan Band were to perform at MCAS Yuma where Bozeman was based.

“It was the simple fact that here is this celebrity who is giving up his time, his money, his everything to help serve us,” said Bozeman about the impact of the Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band on military service members. Standing amongst his fellow Marines near the stage, Bozeman was captivated by the message Gary had for all in attendance: they [Marines] are making a difference and are the reason why the band is able to do what they do. “It helps you realize that there are people out there who are willing to help you.”

relief + resiliency


Our H.O.P.E. program provides complete support to those who have experienced trauma, illness, injury, or loss during their times of urgent need, sometimes with assistance as simple as help paying bills or buying groceries.


Gold Star spouses at the Santa Monica Pier, 2018.


Gold Star spouses at Bubba Gump Shrimp Company, 2018.

highlight: hollywood adventure

In September 24 Gold Star spouses of fallen heroes visited the Gary Sinise Foundation as part of our three-day Hollywood Adventure experience. Highlights included visiting the Santa Monica Pier and strolling along the shore, dining at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co., Smoke House, and Fogo de Chão, and visiting the set of the CBS television show, Seal Team and other soundstanges on the Warners Brothers’ backlot. Glad Star spouses also explored the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the iconic Grauman’s (now referred to as TCL) Chinese Theater.

relief + resiliency


As part of the Gary Sinise Foundation’s Relief and Resiliency program mentorship retreats began in July 2015 and since inception has connected more than 70 wounded veterans from different military conflicts in addition to first responders at the outset of their rehabilitation. More


Boulder Crest Retreat, 2018.


Gary Sinise Foundation’s Mike Schlitz leading the Boulder Crest retreat.



participants in our Boulder Crest Mentorship Retreats


We’re working to bridge the gap between our defender and civilian communities. Honoring America’s heroes both past and present, and inspiring the next generation to do the same, is a responsibility we all share. More

community & education


Nothing offers an opportunity to bond and give thanks quite like breaking bread together. We’re showing gratitude to our defenders by serving them hearty, classic American meals nationwide and at military outposts in Germany and Korea. More


World War II veteran showing a high school student airplanes on display at the National WWII Museum during Soaring Valor 2018.


WWII Veteran participating on Soaring Valor, 2018.


WWII Veteran and students participating on Soaring Valor, 2018.


WWII veteran & local high school student participating on Soaring Valor, 2018.

highlight: grapevine faith christian school

Students from Grapevine Faith Christian School in Grapevine, Texas joined WWII veterans from San Antonio for Soaring Valor #13 from October 25-27 at The National WWII Museum in New Orleans. Heroes from the Second World War experienced combat in the European and Pacific Theaters of War including pivotal battles and engagements at Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Omaha Beach, and in the skies over Germany.

As participants and contributors to a defining period in twentieth-century U.S and world history who helped pave the way for our nation’s freedom and security, we honor all those who selflessly served in uniform on behalf of every American.



veterans & their guardians joined us for a soaring valor experience

community & education


Nothing offers an opportunity to bond and give thanks quite like breaking bread together. We’re showing gratitude to our defenders by serving them hearty, classic American meals nationwide and at military outposts in Germany and Korea. More


Gary Sinise at Serving Heroes at Naval Base Ventura County, 2018.


Serving Heroes, 2018.

highlight: naval base ventura county

225 Servicemen and women at Naval Base Ventura County, Point Mugu, Port Hueneme, were served a hot meal and honored for their dedicated, selfless service in defense of our nation.

The Gary Sinise Foundation has been privileged to serve our nation’s uniformed men and women based at home and abroad more than 197,000 hot meals as part of Serving Heroes. At U.S. military bases in Germany and Korea, we’ve been able to bring more than just a slice of Americana to our service members. On the Korean Peninsula, we’ve been active at Camp Casey since 2015, USAG Daegu since 2018, and more recently Camp Humphreys

community & education


Anyone who has served our nation is welcome to join us for a “Vets Night” dinner and dress rehearsal performance free of charge at the Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago. We’re expanding this program to more venues and locations across the nation. More


Arts & Entertainment Veterans Night


Veterans Night

highlight: vets night

Inspired by his experience directing the production of Tracers in 1984 at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theater, Gary Sinise made it imperative that our veterans be able to enjoy an evening at the theater free of charge. “Vets Night” was born as a result.

More than 500 veterans took part in Vets Night held at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., Steppenwolf Theater, and Forest Guild Theater in Carmel, California.

Productions showcased in 2018 included the Pulitzer Prize winning drama, Our Town, the dark comedy You Got Older, the comedy The Roommate, and the acclaimed show La Ruta.

community & education


Our Ambassadors represent the Gary Sinise Foundation in speaking engagements, public appearances, and leadership opportunities. Each member is individually selected by our founder for their exceptional character and patriotism. More