Who We Are:
The VYCC was founded and established by veterans to help all service members who are transitioning from active duty into a fulfilling civilian life. Every year, there are hundreds-of-thousands of veterans, reservists, guardsmen, and their families looking for careers as they exit their service. Coming back from military duty can be a daunting and stressful time. Finally moving on from military service into civilian life can be just as scary as frontline assault combat. Now more than ever, our valued servicemen and women need the country’s support and patriotism as they return home. Our VYCC Career Center is dedicated to the placement of individuals we serve in careers that fit their extraordinary motivation, loyalty, and skills. The VYCC assists our country’s heroes in attaining gainful, meaningful employment at our proud, American, finest military-friendly companies. We match employers to candidates through the use of pertinent and dynamic career exploration, unique online tools, relationships with key partner-employers, and our longevity and experience in the military career site business.
Whether a Veteran is recently separated or has been separated for a while, the VYCC is committed to assisting our Veterans that could benefit from the assistance we provide. Veterans are welcome to use our facilities for the purpose of bettering themselves. Whether it’s with a quick update to a resume, gain interview skills and insight, or jump into a remedial class to polish up skills.
Nelson Varas, Executive Director, Capt. ARNG, USMC ret.
Founder & Executive Director
Nelson Varas is the Founder and Executive Director of the VYCC. Mr. Varas is a native of Chile but since he has planted his flag in this country, married his childhood sweetheart, is the father of 4, grandfather to 2, and served dutifully in the United States Marine Corps. He quickly realized that veterans were not taking advantage of all of their benefits after serving in the Marines after leaving the service. Being as fortunate in his own life, he wanted to connect Veterans to benefits. He brings over 20 years of military and business experience, an in-depth understanding of military work-source programs, and tremendous business savvy. His vision allows us to provide the highest service level to our Veterans by staying ahead of the technology and business trends. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from DeVry University in Computer Information Systems. Mr. Varas also completed the following certifications in the United States Army as a Field Artillery Officer Basic Course and Adjutant General School of Human Resource Management. He retired in 2018 from the United States Army National Guard as a Captain. He served in both the United States Marine Corps and the United States Army for over 20 military service years.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Reginald Lao is the standing Chairman of the Board for VYCC. Mr. Lao hails from the Philippines islands and has ancestry in Chinese roots that are now firmly placed into California footing. Married for over 12 years with three children. Mr. Lao is also the Executive Director of his non-profit organization Financial Fidelity Academy Inc. He has worked in the customer service and sales industry for the last twenty-five years, which encompasses ten years in management, and four years in leadership development. Having an immigrant mentality even after seeing success in his own life, he now wants to help others find their own inspiration to pursue their big dreams. From a very young age, Reggie was inspired by his own father who was an ordained Christian Reverend. Seeing how his own father inspired others with the messages he delivered, He wants to be able to make an impact for individuals who want to enrich themselves. He is excellent at pouring belief in others in order to help their skills and expertise reach the next level. Mr. Lao holds a Master’s Degree from Keller Graduate School of Management with an emphasis on Entrepreneurship. This makes Him highly capable with his experience and skills to craft and hone individuals to become the best version of themselves.
Mr. Greg “Maverick” Taylor is the Founder and President of TTT Veterans Wellness and Outreach Center, whose mission is to empower Veterans to recover and effectively reintegrate them back into their communities. Mr. Taylor for more than 35 years has worked as an outreach worker, counselor, therapist, and peer support specialist for veterans and has consistently advocated for veteran rights in the Greater Los Angeles community. A U.S. Naval veteran with over 14 years of forwarding Deployment in major areas of conflict, as well as 2 years of Peace Corp. activities. He is also a well-known Social Advocate for Veteran and Homeless rights. Mr. Taylor’s knowledge of problems that faced many veterans, females, and males, comes from his hard-earned personal experience. He holds several degrees, two bachelor’s one in psychology and the other in social psychology, and has State certificates as a Drug and Alcohol abuse counselor. He is also recognized as one of the first Veteran State Certified Peer support specialists in the State of California. Today, Mr. Taylor consults and helps teach stress reduction and anger management techniques to veterans incarcerated as well as helping them through the process of healing and readjustment back into society. He is better known as “The Maverick” on the streets and has developed a strong rapport at the Weingart Center with the homeless community on 5th and San Pedro St. in Los Angeles.
Gabrielle Bowden is a native of Southern, California. She has many years of experience working with non-profit organizations. Mrs. Bowden is a Certified Administrator for the State of California. She works with the mentally challenged in Adult Residential Facilities (ARF). She is the founder of 123 Family in Moreno Valley, CA. and She is a CPR Trainer for EMS Safety. She is a host for Airbnb. She caters to non-profit organizations. She has worked on the Executive Team at New Directions for Veterans for many years. She is a Music & Youth Director at Liberty Baptist Church in Los Angeles, CA. She is on the planning committee for the Annual Celebration Parade for the late Dr. Martin Luther King in Inglewood, CA. She works with a CAN DO organization Justice for Clemency/Prison Ministry. Mrs. Bowden is currently on the Board of Directors for Disability Advocates at Work and Veterans & Youth Career Collaborative. Her highlights are creating innovative ideas and products. She is efficient and creative in consulting, fundraising, event planning, writing plays, and music but not limited to…
Terry Craddock is married to wife Tracey, they have three adult children and they currently reside in the Los Angeles area. Mr. Craddock served the nation for 30 years in the United States Navy with distinction. He served greater than 10 years at senior executive leadership and management level at 3 different commands on board ships and ashore. Advising commanding officers on thousands of personal matters such as training, career guidance, budgeting, program management, policies, and planning. His education at Southern Illinois University, Navy Senior Enlisted Academy and the Command Master Chief Academy are the institution of higher learning which help prepare him for his effective senior leadership and management skills that are needed at such high levels and that can be appreciated by any organization. He retired in 2012 with numerous awards for outstanding performance throughout his career. In the spirit of helping people achieve success in reaching their financial goals, he is currently a Financial Professional who assists clients with their insurance, retirement, and investment needs. He is also a board member of the National Black Veteran Association of Los Angeles, and a member of the VFW and American Legion. Veteran issues and matters are front and center interests of Terry Craddock that is why when asked to be a board member of VYCC, it was a no-brainer to partner with an organization that impacts the lives of the veteran in a positive way every single day. He’s glad to be a part of such a great organization.
Roderick Watson was born in Connecticut but ended up in San Diego, CA, where he joined the Navy. With a passion for helping Veterans and a desire to teach, it was a strange path that led him to VYCC. Upon completion of VYCC training, he began teaching Project Management and subsequently complete his Certification to teach OSHA. Mr. Watson brings over 25 years of military and business experience in various fields, including instruction, maintenance management, the safety industry, inventory control and purchasing management, holding positions as Facilities Supervisor, Purchasing Manager, and Community Manager. He has been married for thirty-seven years, has two stepsons and twin eight-year-old grandsons. He has earned a Bachelor’s degree in Electronics Technology, he is also a Certified Chief Engineering Operations Executive. Mr. Watson is a Manager of Community Associations and an Association Management Specialist. He is currently retired from the United States Navy as an Electronics Technician Chief Petty Officer. He served in both the United States Navy and the United States Naval Reserve for over 26 years of military service.
Jack Wong background is mainly in education with 4 degrees. He holds a career background in public education with a unique achievement of modernization. Mr. Wong first degree is a Bachelor’s in Physics, his theory is that the universe continues from one generation to another with each has trillions of years of lifespan. Mr. Wong also pursued a Master’s degree in Information Science and in Business Administration that he attained during the merging trend of technology and business. Mr. Wong is now applying his skill in research, planning, implementation, administration, and evaluation for continuous improvement in providing training. His most current degree is a Bachelor of Public Health; this degree has made it easy for him to effectively aid seniors to live 100 years or longer. He has also applied to the public health to research the pandemic COVID-19 with 4 criteria: Droplet, Body warmth, Immunity, and Underlying health conditions.
Shaun Feltman is a member of the Board of Directors. He is Born and raised in California, Mr. Feltman attended college at California State University, Fullerton, where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science. Upon graduation, Mr. Feltman joined the United States Air Force. He achieved his highest rank as an officer, 2nd Lieutenant, but he was medically separated early into his service due to a minor hearing condition. However, in the quick span of 5 years following his leave from the Air Force. He has focused on building a multitude of professional skillsets, from having worked years as an aircraft manufacturing engineer to serving as IT project supervisor for Hewlett Packard, and eventually was offered the opportunity to serve with VYCC for over 2 years as Career Services Manager and as Board Chairman, assisting fellow veterans in securing gainful employment opportunities. At the young age of 29, Mr. Feltman currently serves dual roles for the state and federal government as Field Supervisor for the United States Census Bureau and Unemployment Program Rep for the California Employment Development Department (EDD). He continues to assist fellow veterans with career strategy wherever possible.