Operation Mas

Musician-chef-caregiver Carolyne Mas oversees a solar-powered ranchette at an elevation of 4365 feet in the beautiful unincorporated Arizona town of Pearce. A 3-bedroom house stands in the center of a very private 38-acre parcel with farm fencing, a chicken coop and an irrigated garden. The property also includes a generator, well and 1000-gallon water storage tank. Live music in the spirit of the Midnight Ramble abounds.


In the initial phase (Autumn, 2016), Operation Mas will host veterans who need to de-stress and rejuvenate in a healthy environment. Short-term guests will receive an experiential introduction to agriculture and food preparation, and will be eligible to extend their stays. In the second phase (2017), long-term guests will help develop programs aimed at expanding and strengthening the community with an emphasis on fresh food, healthcare and financial security. Your tax-deductible contribution will be used for maintenance of existing infrastructure, and construction of additional housing.

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JEFF NORMAN • Founder/Project Director

Jeff is a former comedian-actor-producer who has been working with veterans since 2003. After helping to organize various stand downs for homeless veterans, he turned his attention in 2015 to the nexus of housing, entrepreneurialism and sustainability. He oversees numerous projects aimed at applying military-acquired skills to the civilian sector, and leads the U.S. Tour of Duty, a nationwide series of community events featuring renowned speakers and performers dedicated to improving democracy. Jeff blogs about justice and sanity for The Norman Report and The Huffington Post.

NADIA McCAFFREY • Director of Veterans Advocacy

Patrick McCaffrey joined the National Guard the day after the 9/11 attacks. He is the first California Guardsman in his unit to die while serving in the Iraq war. His mother, Nadia, has since devoted her life to housing veterans and nurturing their resurgence. 29 former service members lived in her house at various times, and Nadia helped launch several veterans communities that combine housing with supportive services and career training. She is leading the campaign to end veteran homelessness, and Camp Patrick will soon be established in honor of her son.


DAN TAPIA • Director of Food and Beverage Concepts

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After enlisting at the age of 19, Dan reluctantly left the US Navy due to severe physical injuries. Although he’s been diagnosed as a quadriplegic, he has worked vigorously for many years as a cicerone, barman, bar manager, busser, barback, bouncer and grunt of every kind. When a high-end Beverly Hills restaurant where he had landed a sommelier position refused to accommodate his disability, Dan decided to open his own restaurant in Long Beach, CA, and join forces with HomeFront Rising to create food and beverage opportunities for veterans throughout the nation.


CAROLYNE MAS • Site Director, Operation Mas

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Renowned for her exciting live shows, Carolyne burst onto the Greenwich Village music scene in the late 1970s. She made critically-acclaimed albums for Mercury Records, and performed throughout the United States, Canada and Europe, where she eventually settled and experienced her greatest success throughout the 1990s. She retired from the music industry in 2002 to raise her son and care for her family, but she still occasionally performs in Germany and Italy, where she recorded an album in 2013. Carolyne is currently pursuing a degree in Integrative Health, and is overseeing our emerging veterans community in Pearce, AZ. Operation Mas serves as an incubator for projects involving sustainable agriculture, culinary arts, economic security and innovative housing.

 

CARL WELTY • Director of Planning and Architecture

Carl is an architect who specializes in sustainable design and green building. He developed an emergency housing concept for Haiti after its major earthquake. Because veteran homelessness deserves the same type of urgent response, Carl has been enlisted to adapt his vision and apply it to a plan for nationwide regenerative housing and agricultural communities.

CHRISTINA GIORGIO • Pro Bono Counsel

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Christina is a Staff Attorney for Public Counsel’s Community Development Project. She advises on land use and zoning matters with a focus on green space equity. She also specializes in employment laws as well as housing and environmental litigation.

ANITA NOWOCIN • Grant Writer

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Anita is a retired schoolteacher who wrote and won numerous education grants throughout her 32-year career. She has a strong passion for helping young adults and veterans in need of financial or emotional assistance. Anita is a lifetime Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Auxiliary member, and she was the Founding President of the Tacoma Subchapter of the Fort Lewis Association of the United States Army (AUSA).


KEVIN POLK • Director of Business Development

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Kevin is a social entrepreneur whose work has centered around creating fee-for-service programs that address pressing social needs. He is the founding Executive Director of the Southern Nevada Transit Coalition, which created a region-wide bus system in eight weeks when post-9/11 budget cuts threatened to drastically reduce services to rural and special needs populations. He also launched the New Orleans Furniture Bank, distributing millions of dollars worth of home furnishings to more than 5,000 displaced gulf residents after Hurricanes Rita, Katrina and Gustav. He joined HomeFront Rising to start a program that helps homeless veterans become homeowners.  

PARTNERS:
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