Retired Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, came to Dallas this week, hat in hand. Myers is seeking “seed money” for a new training program for military veterans that bears his name, to be launched by MediSend International, a Dallas-based nonprofit. The $1.5 million, General Richard B. Myers Veterans Biomedical Equipment Technology Program will train vets to be biomedical repair technicians and ready them for employment in less than six months.
On Thursday Myers, a member of the MediSend advisory board, pitched the fledgling program to an unidentified corporation and spoke to a small gathering at the offices of Strasburger & Price LLP, one of the program sponsors. Today he’ll talk up the training initiative to more potential donors, then be feted at a small dinner party hosted by Carol Glendenning, vice president of the Dallas Opera board and a partner at Strasburger.
Nick Hallack, MediSend president and CEO, came up with the idea to get Myers involved in the new venture. And why not: the retired general’s star power can’t hurt as MediSend attempts to raise money for the program. As of Thursday, Hallack said, the program had $500,000 in commitments, leaving $1 million to go. The fundraising piece is important, he added, because Irving-based Exxon Mobil, which has supported MediSend for years with the likes of scholarships and grants, “has reduced some of its funding” recently.