Our Mission: Back to Work, Back to Life.

Community Leaders

by Rob Ray Brazell

  –  Another Inspirational Flight  – 

“There’s No Place Like Home” – Rocky Mountain Airport

Return monthly for new posts in this column.

I’d like to thank Mark Follett, Angel Flight Pilot, for returning me home after a recent mission in Utah. 


Winter Park Ski Area

Once again, we had a smooth flight all the way over the mountains.  We flew at various altitudes and patterns depending on Air Traffic Control (ATC) commands.  We flew much further south than past Angel Flights.  It was one of the most exotic and exhilarating views in my life.  Then as we flew closer to home we passed over Winter Park’s ski slopes.  Like a little kid, I was instantly filled with joy and curiosity.  What a privilege.

With Mark’s powerful Cessna 210 engine, we easily lifted up to 15,000 feet where we breathed pure oxygen through the airplane’s modernized cockpit.  It never ceases to amaze me how far avionics have come in just a short time.  Small planes have advanced instruments today that enable pilots to achieve extraordinary leaps in comfort and safety.

Mark Follett, Oxygen @ 15,000 Feet

Mark Follett is an amazing human being.  He spent most of his career working as a researcher in high technology but more recently decided to become an airline pilot.  Mark’s entire family is extraordinary and has given back to society in many ways.  They are imbued with the America Spirit and are true community leaders.

Mark Follett says, “I grew up in Boulder CO and have always enjoyed the mountain views from my back yard.  My dad helped me obtain my pilots license, in 1990, after he was diagnosed with cancer and could not fly his plane anymore.  I have taken many of my friends and family over this same route, as Rob flew on, and always receive the same response ‘What a wonderful view of the Colorado Rockies’.  It was my pleasure to fly Rob back to Boulder and get to know him and his organization during our short flight together .”

Mark Follett, Community Leader

Thank you again and again for your generosity.  I will always be grateful to your support of Project:  Return To Work Inc.  (R2W), www.return2work.org.



Shop with us on Amazon.


By choosing to utilize this link, you are helping to make a contribution to Project Return To Work Inc.  (R2W), where our focus and mission is to help all applicants back to work and back to life! A portion of your Amazon purchase price is donated to Project:  Return To Work Inc.  (R2W)  through the Amazon Smile program at no added cost to you! For further information on the Amazon Smile program, please visit https://smile.amazon.com/gp/chpf/about/ref=smi_se_dshb_aas_saas


donate now


Read more –  click here


Good people doing good things.

Steve Zimmermann, Angel Flight Pilot





Greg Lind, Farmers Insurance Agent


Charlotte County Justice Center




“…Thank you so much for being such a great support to Jamie. She loves her job and it warms our heart to see her so happy and feeling like she is part of the community. We have you and your agency to thank for that.

Many Blessings to you.

Tama [Jamie’s mom]”




Carly, R2W STEM Intern

I very much enjoyed working for R2W. Not only was everyone very kind, supportive, and patient with me while I was learning the ropes, but they all love working for R2W. The enthusiasm everyone has for what they do comes through clearly and makes for a pleasant, passionate community and work environment. While I was broadening my skillset, I got a perspective of the struggles the veterans and their families face when it comes to finding work: something I hadn’t had any insight or experience with at all previously. I worked hard and enjoyed working hard. Overall it was a very meaningful experience to me, and one I would recommend to others without hesitation. 

MOM – My daughter had the opportunity this year to intern with R2W and I felt that she gained invaluable insights into the struggles that veterans and the disabled encounter when trying to secure meaningful employment.  Working an honest day’s work and the sense of identity that it brings for someone who has had many challenges was eye opening for her.  Having heard me talk about the struggles my own brother helped bring this experience full circle.  [Rob Brazell, Founder] and the R2W team displayed a passion and drive to help everyone possible, including making may daughter’s experience as impactful as possible.  I would absolutely recommend R2W to anyone looking to help out in this difficult area.

Carly conducted a special 2 week STEM internship for her Senior project in May 2017-  80 hours. She continues to volunteer, helping train new STEM Interns and supporting R2W professionals placing injured veterans into lasting careers.


Kim Anderson, R2W Employment Specialist

Kim Anderson trained Carly how to use StaffCV– advanced technology donated to R2W for many years.  It distinguishes R2W from others and enables STEM Interns to make a significant contribution to society.  We all serve.

StaffCV is an amazing company!  They’re from New Zealand and don’t have a stake in our wars but they’ve given and given and given for years.  They’ve demonstrated not only the American spirit but also the human spirit that heals wounds and restores families.  Everyone at R2W is tremendously grateful.

ReadyTalk is also a key donated technology.  Only blocks from R2W’s headquarters, they too have demonstrated great patriotism for years.

Mary Ellen, Volunteer

A number of fellow residents of Anthem Ranch and I were tasked with calling veterans re being part of a data base to test potential products that might help veterans return to work after their service.  While many of us were reluctant to be part of such a calling effort, it turned out to be fine as most of the time we just left a message which was provided for us to work with.  When I reached people, they were able to say they had work, were grateful for the information and in one case were still in service but actually pulled over out of traffic to talk to me because he considered “Return2Work” an important organization.



Happy New Year – Community Leaders

Community Leaders

by Rob Brazell

I’d like to thank Steve Zimmermann and Howard Foster, my pilot and Mission Assistant on a recent Angel Flight West mission to serve R2W clients.  They made a material sacrifice that enabled me to realize R2W’s mission and I am deeply grateful.

I’ve taken many Angel Flights over the years.  10 years ago, I remember taking three small planes from my hometown airport in Boulder, Colorado to a military base in Montana where I gave a motivational speech to injured soldiers and their families.  Talk about a group of caring people who just give and give and give!  Each leg was a compelling story about the American spirit and I felt tremendously privileged to be part of something so good.

Steve, Howard, and I had perfect weather as we flew over the Rocky Mountains.  It was exhilarating.  I felt renewed as I always do on Angel Flights.  There’s just something about flying 10,000 to 20,000 feet above the earth.  So Angel Flights are a double benefit for me.

Steve Zimmerman says, “Volunteering my aircraft and piloting experience for Angel Flight missions is a joy: everyone gets something out of the deal. My passengers get to where they need to go for their medical treatments, and I get to share my love of flying. If the beauty of flight can take a patient’s mind off their illness for an hour or two, so much the better.”

The following pictures are from Steve.

Thank you again and again, Steve and Howard.  You are good people doing good things.


More stories:










In Loving Memory – Alfred “Ray” Brazell

When I was a green rookie cop in Pinedale 1972, Ray was my backup on a domestic call.  The guy at the domestic had a shotgun waving it around.  Being a rookie I was scared to death.  Ray calmly walked up to the guy and jerked the shotgun out of his hands.  Ray was always ready and willing to backup another officer, I had a lot of respect for him.  Darned good officer he was.  I learned a lot from him. 

My condolences to the family.

Hank Ruland
Retired County Sheriff

Alfred “Ray” Brazell 1928 – 2017


Alfred “Ray” Brazell, 89, passed away Christmas morning, December 25, 2017 at Sage View Care Center in Rock Springs, Wyoming. He was a resident of Pinedale, Wyoming for 50 years and a former resident of Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Ray was born on June 5, 1928 in Baggs, Wyoming, the son of Alfred W. Brazell and Ethel Hutchinson.

He attended schools in Baggs, Rawlins, and Saratoga Wyoming.

Ray married Frankie Nixon in Saratoga, Wyoming on June 4, 1950 and divorced in 1976. He married Caroline Boroff on August 15, 1980 in Daniel, Wyoming.

He was a Marine in World War II and worked as a Highway Patrolman for Wyoming Highway Patrol for 35 years, and later retired in 1976. Ray also worked for the Pinedale School District as a bus mechanic, then as a reverse flow tester in the Jonah Oil and Gas Field. He was a member of the Masonic lodge and a founding member of Project: Return to Work Inc. (R2W) in 1998 to help injured warriors and disabled civilians back to work, back to life.  He donated money over the decades and gave speeches to injured warriors at military events about the similarities and differences between service during World War II and current conflicts.  He also mentored injured warriors returning from combat in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as other locations around the world.

Ray enjoyed timbering, fishing, hunting, camping, ranching, horses, and woodworking.

Survivors include his former wife Frankie Nixon Brazell of Port Charlotte, Florida, wife Caroline Brazell of Pinedale, Wyoming; four sons, Rob Ray Brazell of Boulder, Colorado, Chuck McDermott and wife Katie of Dillon, Colorado, Brian McDermott and wife Dolor of Pinedale, Wyoming, Kevin McDermott and wife Tina of Farmington, New Mexico; two brothers, Dale Brazell of Rock Springs, Wyoming, Vern Brazell and wife Luana of Salt Lake city, Utah; two grandchildren, Melina and Tanon McDermott, as well as several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; one daughter, DeLisle Ruth Brazell Webb Lovenlight; one brother Floyd Brazell; five sisters; Alice Whisler, Helen Moore, Eileen Wentworth, Doris Rodgers, and Jane Moore, and his beloved dog, Cindy.

Following cremation a funeral service will be conducted in Spring, 2018.  Contact Rob Brazell at rob.brazell@return2work.org or 720-359-1541 for details. 

Please make a contribution to Ray’s charity in his name:  http://www.return2work.org/donate .  Please also consider volunteering.




R2W’s 20th Annual Gala – January 13, 2018

You are cordially invited to attend R2W’s 20th Annual Benefit and Awards Ceremony

January 13, 2018
5:00 PM
The Isle Yacht Club
1780 West Marion Avenue
Punta Gorda, FL 33950

$75 / plate;   $575 / table

buy tickets – click here


Keynote Speaker:  Dr. John G. Oliver Miller

Dr. Miller was a combat surgeon in Afghanistan.  Now he is a M.D. in the ICU at Eastern Regional Medical Center in Idaho Falls, Idaho.  He has improved medical science to save lives not possible in previous eras.  Dr. Miller sees the value of R2W’s programs that give injured warriors continued meaning in life.

5:00 PM     Opening Prayer & Welcome Message
5:30 PM     Dinner
6:00 PM     Keynote:  Dr. John G. Oliver Miller
6:30 PM     Awards
7:00 PM     Thank You and Looking Forward

Thank you for donating complimentary rooms!




Ronald Cole, PhD


Lifetime Achievement

Ron is the President of Boulder Learning Technologies. He has published approximately 60 articles in peer-review journals and 150 papers in archived conference proceedings. He is the recipient of over $40 million in individual investigator awards from the NSF, NIH and IES. For the past 15 years he has led research projects that aim to create a new generation of learning tools that feature conversational interaction with virtual teachers and therapists.  Ron was a model R2W director for several years helping write multiple grant proposals, donating frequently, and engaging his entire family in the charity.  He showed exemplary courage when he continued working full-time while being treated for cancer.


Nikki DAgostino, R2W Employment Specialist & Assistant Area Coordinator


Employee of the Year

Nikki is particularly drawn to aiding the developmentally disabled, physically and mentally disabled, the underprivileged, and the underemployed. At an early age she began volunteering at Wrentham Developmental Center.  She graduated from Suffolk University with highest distinction for a Bachelor’s degree of Science in clinical psychology and worked at Arbour-Fuller Psychiatric Hospital where she served dual diagnoses patients (mental illness and co-occurring drug addiction).   She worked as a Career Specialist for two years at a non-profit organization in Massachusetts.  She says, “Working as an Employment Specialist at Project: Return to Work Inc has given me the opportunity to work with employers to strive for equality and diversity in the workplace, ….  I am always pushing myself to learn new skills and knowledge so that I can be a better leader, organizer and advocate for those less fortunate than myself.”


Carly Repaci, STEM Intern


STEM Intern of the Year

Carli Repacci.  In May 2017, Carly was a college-bound high school senior who had worked in many volunteer and internship programs, including NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), STEM summer camps, and library reading programs. This gave her a diverse background spanning from customer service to computer science.  For her senior project, she completed a special 2 week internship combining 2 semester-long curriculums, each normally taught over 15 weeks.  Then she continued to volunteer her tremendous skills serving dozens of veterans, disabled civilians, and their spouses under the direction of professional counselors including Kimberly Anderson, R2W Employment Specialist.


President’s Volunteer Service Awards

R2W is an Official Leadership Organization for this prestigious award.  The ability to bestow Presidential recognition on our volunteers is a tremendous honor.  Recognizing the great work of our volunteers delivers a powerful message that encourages other to take action.  

R2W’s STEM interns, mentors, and other volunteers can earn a medal from the President of the United States for their time and impact on society.  Rob Brazell, R2W Founder was awarded a gold medal from President Obama a few years ago.  This year, he has been nominated for another gold medal and Fran Nixon has been nominated for a lifetime achievement award from President Trump.  A special event will be held for these awards.  Call 720-359-1541 for an invitation.  Limited seating.

2017 – Blastoff!

Admiral Dick Young

Inspired by Admiral Young, R2W’s Mentor program helps incarcerated Americans transitioning to model citizenship as well as injured warriors transitioning to model employment.

R2W  engaged broad community support at VFW Post #1, community colleges & universities, our annual Day Of Caring event with United Way, and highly visible events with other community leaders.

Strategic Plan Milestone –  R2W launched its R&D program.


R2W demonstrated self-sustaining revenues from quality services in Florida.


R2W was in the news in 2017!

Return2Work on Fox News!









Our Unique Approach



Clients evaluate themselves in a fraction of the time.  Our psychometric profiler asks questions in a creative way to assess client aptitudes and preferences. R2W counselors performs a follow up evaluation to complete a plan. The plan identifies the client’s career goals, personality traits and interests — along with traditional factors such as work experience — in order to match them with potential employers.



Clients enroll in vocational programs, higher education, and/or R2W’s Service Learning Internships. Additional career counseling includes resume critiques, successful interview / presentation strategies, business and career etiquette, and more.




R2W counselors utilize donated technologies and innovative methods to match applicants with employers for unprecedented positive outcomes – lasting placements.



R2W Programs


Client Services

Tier 1 & 2:  Direct Recruiting
Tier 3:  Employment Services
Tier 4:  Supported Employment
Tier 3 & 4:  Service Learning Internships!


Jalali Hartman, Advisor to the Board


Several R2W Directors are lifetime mentors for key staff in our 5 year incubators.  Other mentors follow our 1 year program.  One mentee at a time.  Still others volunteer for an afternoon at one of R2W events for resume preparation.  Click here to volunteer now!




Ally Finlinson, STEM Intern, BYU

STEM Interns

  • Assistant Employment Specialist
  • Assistant Job Developer
  • Assistant Technical Support Specialist
  • Heuristics:  The Underlying Math
  • 70-80 hours/internship;
  • School credit; some stipends; White House Awards


Zoya Dixit, R2W Volunteer


R2W is largely a volunteer organization supported by millions of dollars of in-kind contributions from high technology companies.  This enables us to hold down costs and achieve one of the lowest General & Administrative rates in the industry.  Foothills United Way helps us recruit and track about 250 volunteers including CALL BANK, Office Assistant,Assistant Job Developer,Assistant Employment Specialist, Assistant Technical Support Specialist, Assistant Grant Writer,Assistant Fundraiser, PR, & Marketing, Outreach Specialist, Assistant Volunteer Coordinator, Assistant Website Host,Board Members, and Advisors to the Board.  Click here to volunteer now!


Research and Development

As part of its strategic plan, R2W conducts scientific research to determine the empirical impact of training, medical devices, and alternative medicines on employment.



Greg Holt, R2W Employment Specialist


As part of R2W’s strategic plan, we are spinning off 26 Service Disabled Veteran Owned Businesses (SDVOBs), one for each VA region and one or two for back office support.  Candidates are placed in five year incubators enabling them to launch their businesses without venture capital or bank loans.  R2W Board Members often serve as lifetime mentors.



R2W Client Services


Tier 1 & 2:  Direct Recruiting

Tier 1 clients are not injured; Tier 2 clients have completed their vocational rehabilitation.  They are “job ready” and can radically speed up the employment process by utilizing automated features and online classes.



SGT Logan Jubeck, US Army (retired)

Tier 3 & 4:  Service Learning Internships

Tier 3 clients are severely injured and need vocational rehabilitation.  Tier 4 clients are so severely injured that gainful employment is not realistic but supported employment adds quality of life.  Service Learning internships utilize donated technologies to quickly zero in on specific work tasks that excite clients, bring out their resiliency, and achieve stabilization more quickly.



Kim Anderson, R2W Employment Specialist

Tier 3 Employment Services & Tier 4 Supported Employment

R2W provides an array of traditional vocational rehabilitation services for Tier 3 & 4 clients.  These clients frequently require months or years of intensive service.




STEM Interns

STEM interns learn advanced technologies to achieve unprecedented positive outcomes.  They also learn the value of R2W’s buddy system for giving back to injured military service members and disabled citizens.  It’s radically different than the Vietnam era!


Ally Finlinson, STEM Intern, BYU

Carly Repaci, STEM Intern,

Rhett Sandal, STEM Intern, Silver Creek High School

Ed Fenwick, STEM Intern, Kalamazoo Area Mathematics and Science Center

Paige O’Connor, STEM Intern, Kalamazoo Area Mathematics and Science Center

Cameron Telahgani, STEM Intern, Longmont High School

Montek Thind, STEM Intern, CU


Jordan Cole, STEM Intern, CU





 2017 Board of Directors 

Rob Brazell President

Dr. John Miller Secretary

Andy Sesser Treasurer

Steve Litchfield, Attorney
Executive Committee

Lora Reed, PhD
R2W Executive Committee

Richard Harris
Executive Committee


Larry Gustafson, Attorney
Executive Committee


Jay D. VanderWerff
Executive Committee

Jalali Hartman, Advisor

Fran Nixon, Advisor


Jannie Hendrikje Huiskes-Smith, Advisor

Kevin Mahoney, Former Executive Committee


Prof. Ruth Dameron (ret)
Secretary prior to Dr. Miller








Sponsors & Community Partners

Thank you!

Become a sponsor!  Click here. Add your logo.  Platinum sponsors also receive favorable mention in the media.

Thank you for donating complimentary rooms!

R2W President To Speak At Council of State Government Dec 14th

Rob Brazell, R2W President has been invited to speak on a panel on the topic of veterans employment, specifically for disabled veterans, at the “Council of State Government’s (CSG) Policy Academy: Hiring and Retaining Workers with Disabilities,” which is taking place on Thursday, December 14 at the CSG Annual Conference in Las Vegas, NV.

R2W on Fox News

Fox 13 News
 – The Place –
Salt Lake City

     click below    

How one company is helping veterans return to work

Rob, the founder and chairman of Project:  Return To Work Inc.  (R2W), tells us about how they are helping local veterans and their spouses.

You can go to their upcoming event (click on the following):  Where To Start?


Other News

What STEM Interns Say About R2W




volunteer          sponsor an event          donate         


Special Thanks To




     –  Career Exploration & Planning – 


        May 7th, 2018, noon Mountain Time     

VFW Post #1
841 Santa Fe Drive
Denver, CO  80204


Online May 7th, 2018 noon Mountain Time: 

 Register here: https://cc.readytalk.com/r/4wu9ka6m20z3&eom

For info
call 720-359-1541
or use our
Contact Page

 Bring your laptop and headset!


Jennifer Cohen, Online Instructor
Kim Anderson, Employment Specialist, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Kaitlin Dial, Denver, Colorado
Zoya Dixit, Denver, Colorado

Need a change but don’t know what’s your best next career?  This free workshop is for you!

Exploring your options is the first step toward winning a fulfilling and lasting career.  Let’s dramatically speed up the process!

Career Exploration & Planning is a 20 minute webinar followed by a 1 hour in-person workshop.  Experts will show you how to use R2W’s innovative tools to quickly zero in on quality jobs matching your career goals, while increasing your interviews and job offers.

You might find the perfect job during the class.  You will also learn how to get additional training and one-on-one support from caring counselors.  Apply for a professional mentor too!

Applying for the right job could last a lifetime.  It’s worth exploring!

“Our workshops are FAST!    Benefits:  you can complete your own evaluation in a fraction of the time AND you can apply for a Mentor who will make a big commitment to you– 12 months.  It’s worth your time.”  R2W Founder, Rob Brazell


R2W Mentors

Mentors provide expert help for a year or more.








Sponsor, Donors & Community Partners


Microsoft ReadyTalk Logo veteranspassporttohopelogogregLindstaffcv-logo-2015 (1)Your Office Office EvolutionSwy_Logo_Compact-FNLFoothills United Wayrobauto-logo

Sesser Logo


    image001      image002    








R2W Joins UCAR’s 7th Annual Job Fair Nov. 2

Visit R2W’s table for consideration.  We post jobs for multiple employers in a wide range of careers.


Thursday, Nov. 2, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (general public welcome from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.)


UCAR Center Green Campus (Bldg 1), 3080 Center Green Drive, Boulder 80301

Full Article:  https://www2.ucar.edu/atmosnews/news/129474/ucar-host-7th-annual-job-fair-nov-2

BOULDER, Colo. — Veterans, people with disabilities, and the public can meet with 20 Front Range employers including Project:  Return To Work Inc.  (R2W) at a job fair hosted by the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research on Thursday, November 2, on UCAR’s Center Green campus, 3080 Center Green Drive, in north Boulder.

UCAR job fair scene

Participants in a previous UCAR job fair visit one of the employers’ booths. (©UCAR. Photo by Carlye Calvin. This image is freely available for media & nonprofit use.)ER

Now in its seventh year, the annual event is co-sponsored by UCAR, Workforce Boulder County, and the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation of the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.

The first hour of the job fair (10–11 a.m.) is dedicated to veterans and people with disabilities. The general public is then also welcome from 11 a.m. until the fair wraps up at 2 p.m.

“This is always one of my favorite events of the year,” said Randy Schalhamer, UCAR’s talent acquisition manager. “We are excited to have another great turnout from employers that share in UCAR’s commitment to assisting job seekers in the local community — especially veterans and people with disabilities.”


Day Of Caring 2017

 – Meaningful Event –

Foothills United Way, Office Evolution, ReadyTalk, StaffCV, and many others joined together to help recruit applicants for R&D projects at R2W.  R2W has participated in Foothills United Way’s Day of Caring for many years.  Collectively, we have made a huge difference in the lives of thousands of veterans at past events and continued the tradition this year.  We reached out to 500 veterans, disabled civilians, and their spouses for research to help them breakthrough employment barriers including PTSD, depression, and pain.

The event was help at the following:

Friday, September 8, 2017
8:00 AM – Noon – Call Bank @ Office Evolution 
Noon – 1:30 PM – Lunch @Foothills United Way 
Continental Breakfast
Office Evolution
357 S. McCaslin Blvd Suite 200
Louisville, CO 80027

Our Call Bank reached out to 500 veterans in our system.  Kim Anderson, R2W Employment Specialist, gave great training to everyone.  Thank you for making this event a complete success!



Kim Anderson

We are deeply grateful to all our sponsors, donors, and community partners who rallied the entire community to our cause.

DONATE – http://www.return2work.org/donate


Sponsor an event(s):  http://www.return2work.org/contact-us


Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)