Elizabeth A. Byers-Jiron
9485 GRACE LANE
GREENWOOD, DELAWARE 19950
(302)349-4898 OFFICE ~ (302)349-0985 HOME
Elizabeth (Liz) Byers-Jiron, is currently the Executive Director for the Veterans’ Awareness Center, (VAC) Foundation Greenwood, Delaware. A non-profit organization designed to "assist ALL Veteran's in achieving independence through access to information and services."
The Veterans' Awareness Center was an idea that was created to bring Veteran’s support to the local Veteran that had no idea as to where to find Veteran's services. Not all Veterans belong to Service Organizations.
The Awareness Center opened its doors before the Veteran Administration Clinics (CBOC’s) or even the Veterans Center existed. The idea that Liz and Bill Jiron created to open a Center that could act as a temporary repository of information, a shelter until shelter could be located, a quick meal for veterans that had no funds, a lead to employment and a drop-in Center for those that were lonely with the idea to prevent depression and avoid a possible suicide, has been a huge success over the last thirteen years.
Liz has just celebrated 50 years supporting Active Military, Reserve Officers/Enlisted, Veterans and National Guard Members
Executive Director for the Veterans' Awareness Center (VAC), Liz offers an avenue to meet and identify veterans needs for employment, education, training, and Veterans Administration services. The VAC provides a direction for obtaining emergency financial support and has developed a process for stamping out “I don’t know,” by providing Veterans with a single point of contact to resolve an issue. Understanding a Veterans dilemma is a sure way to keep a Veteran from becoming homeless and less stressed. In veterans lives they may be dealing with a PTSD issue and the Veterans stability or lack of stability would not allow them to resolve their own issues without support. Several years ago, one of the greatest issues Veterans were experiencing was the Family separation. Liz reached out to the Child Support Offices and working with the upper management created a pathway to get support quickly for Veterans. Partnering with Child Support Offices, the partnership gave both the custodial parent and the noncustodial parent a way to raise their children in a noncombatant way. Something as easy as a hair cut for employment, is only a telephone call away!
Liz has the desire to assist Veterans whether they are in their homes, in shelters and even in the woods, an energetic person who has a passion for getting the Veterans to the right resource. Time at the Center consists of meeting and greeting Veterans throughout the year and even on the weekends. When most business offices are closed on Friday for the weekend, the Veterans Awareness Center is only a phone call away!
In addition to meeting and responding to Veterans needs at the Veterans Awareness Center, Liz has been the Director for the Delaware Veterans Stand Down for Delaware for the last thirteen years and Salisbury, Maryland for three years.
Other activities and programs at the Veterans Awareness Center include Working with the Commission of Veteran Affairs and a Partnership with Mayors throughout Delaware to end Veteran homelessness; Working with the Delaware State Dental Society, Liz developed a program to provide dental care for veterans, that are low to moderate income with our "Give A Vet A Smile" Program. Members of the Dental Society of Delaware is a group of Dentists that truly care about our "at risk" veterans and have identified a way that each dentist may give back to this Country. With the leadership that Liz provides to Students attending Delaware State University this project has been a WIN-WIN for Veterans throughout Delaware and the students have taken such great interest in meeting and greeting our veterans while fostering the Veteran with the right Dentist. The Dental Society has given back to our veterans over $100,000 in services in the last two years.
Another project that Liz continues to direct is the annual Military Women's Tea, a highlight of the year was to bring high level military members shoulder to shoulder with other military women that just need ideas and advice. This year's Tea included advice on "Relieving the Stress by being their Best" and provided advice for juggling the family while serving the military.
In 2011, after serving as a Board Member and at the request of the Board Members, Liz became the Executive Director for the Home of the Brave, located in Milford, Delaware, a fifteen bed veterans’ facility. After leaving the Home of the Brave as Director, Liz established the first homeless women veterans’ shelter on the DELMARVA in Quantico, Maryland. In July 2017 Liz accepted the Directors position at Victory Village
a transitional home for Veterans located on five acres in beautiful Middletown, Delaware. Within the first six months thirty-seven transitional veterans passed through the doors at Victory Village.
Liz is a native of Washington, DC and lived in Southwest Washington until the Government gained her family's and surrounding properties to demolish and build what is currently L'Enfant Plaza. Her family then relocated to Hyattsville, Maryland where she attended schools including Prince George's Community College and the University of Maryland.
Liz relocated to Delaware after her retirement from the Department of Defense, Naval Sea Systems Command, with over thirty-seven years of Federal Service. Liz began her Federal career in Washington DC, with the Naval Electronics Systems Command (NAVELEX) at the Main Navy and Munitions Building, which was in the same area that the Vietnam Wall sits today. Liz then transferred to the Naval Ship Engineering Center (NAVSEC) which merged as part of the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) and her position was relocated to Crystal City, Virginia, just outside the Pentagon area. Working in the Combat Systems, Interior and Navigation Directorate and then relocating to the Industrial Facilities Management Directorate, Liz was afforded the opportunity to work in the naval shipyards and Supervisor of Shipbuilding (SUPSHIP) Offices throughout the Country. Liz will tell anyone, that "she had the most rewarding career ever, and experienced opportunities that not very many women have had."
Liz is the recipient of two Department of Defense Medals during her career: The Civil Service Superior Service Medal and the Civil Service Meritorious Medal. Service Medals were awarded for the management of millions of dollars in annual cost savings and cost avoidances across multiple, Congressional Programs:
The Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA) which provided the Navy with over $300 million in lifetime cost avoidance by reducing the number of civilian shipyard employees on Workman's Compensation and returning employees to work. This achievement was accomplished by partnering with Navy Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS); designed the Navy’s first Civilian Drug Testing Program for both public and private naval shipyards; management of the Management Control Program, providing reasonable assurance that fraud, waste or abuse was eliminated in all naval shipyards; oversight of annual inspections for forty-six ships donated by the U.S. Congress to cities nationwide; managing the naval shipyard and SUPSHIP Naval Reserve Engineering Duty Officer (EDO) Program, by integrating Naval Reserves support into active duty Headquarters, Naval Shipyard's and SUPSHIP Offices; designing the Naval Reserve yearly Business Plan aligning with the plans and responsibilities for the (NAVSEA) Strategic Plan; designed the Environmental, Safety and Historical Information Program (ESHIP), to house historical information on facilities, tanks, buildings and land with potential use for historical ship information.
Liz also mobilized Naval Reserves Engineering Duty Officers to augment the active-duty workforce to Washington, DC after 911 and to assist with the Headquarters for naval shipyards around the Country. Additionally, reserve support was mobilized to SUPSHIP Pascagoula, Mississippi for eighteen months after the transport and during the USS Cole restoration and repair efforts resulting from the terrorist attack in Yemen. Liz supported Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and worked to establish a new Docking and Heavy Lift Naval Reserve Unit for underwater inspections and security.
Liz participated and authored papers for the Association of Scientists and Engineers (ASNE) forum and the Vice President Al Gore’s National Partnership for “Reinventing Government Hammer Award.” Papers authored included the history of the “Donation of Naval Ships to Cities inspections throughout the Country” and the “Environmental, Safety Historical Information Program (ESHIP)."
Enjoying one of her major responsibilities with NAVSEA, which included interfacing with Flag Officers, members of the Senior Executive Service, Secretaries for Naval Leadership, other influential groups and individuals, including Commanding Officers at Portsmouth, New Hampshire; Norfolk, Virginia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Pascagoula, Mississippi; Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; Long Beach and Mare Island, California and Bremerton, Washington, Liz provided formal presentations on force utilization, manpower and program requirements and recommendations. Since retirement, Liz has gained the respect of many Mayors, Senators, State Representatives and Governors throughout several States providing information for various veterans.
After retirement Liz joined the Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary and became the Seaford, Delaware Unit Commander progressing to the Department of Delaware Disabled American Veterans State Auxiliary Commander. In addition, she is a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary in Greenwood. Liz is well connected with most Service Organizations such as the American Legions, Veterans of Foreign Wars through her partnership with the Delaware Commission of Veterans Affairs. Liz enjoys the camaraderie as a member of the Delaware Joining Forces (DJF).
She is the wife of William (Bill) Jiron a retired Air Force Veterans and the former wife of a wounded Vietnam Army Medic who was recipient of the Purple Heart and Silver Star and a former elected official in Maryland; has children affected with Agent Orange issues; Mother of a Marine Corp Presidential Guard during the President Regan years; Sister of an Air National Guard member, Liz and Bill reside in Greenwood.
Liz has been nominated and selected for awards which include the Governor Markel's "Volunteer Award;" the DelTech, Owens Campus Alumni Association "Women's Day Celebration Award"; The DELMARVALOUS Award and the Mountaire "Better Delmarva Award" along with various other awards since retirement.
"I wake up every morning, feeling a bit of pride, that I have helped a veteran gain back his or her dignity, the day before"... states Liz Byers-Jiron!"