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Bob Hope Veterans Support Program Celebrates 500th Employed Veteran

BHVSP Spotlight Tony Piazza First Pitch at Padres

On September 18, ESSC celebrated the 500th veteran placed in meaningful employment through the Bob Hope Veterans Support Program (BHVSP) with Marine Corps. veteran Tony Piazza throwing out the first pitch before the San Diego Padres vs. Arizona Diamondbacks baseball game at San Diego’s Petco Park .

Tony, who is the sixth generation of his family to serve in the military, said he has played baseball his entire life and throwing the pitch was like a dream come true. The Bob Hope Veterans Support Program helped him transition back into civilian life after he served in the Marine Corps for five years, most recently as a sergeant stationed at Camp Pendleton. Participating in the program helped Tony enhance his job-seeking skills including preparing his resume, interview skills, connections with employers, and advocating on his behalf. As a result, he is now a project manager at the construction company SaveCal, and plans to study Business Management at Vanguard University starting this fall.

What’s more, CVS Health presented ESSC with a check for $4,000, a donation they raised through ticket sales to the game. Over the past 11 years, CVS Health has raised more than $10 million dollars in support of services provided by ESSC. 

BHVSP founding donor Linda Hope, Chair/CEO of her parents’ Bob and Dolores Hope Foundation including The Bob Hope Legacy, joined Mark Whitley, CEO of Easterseals Southern California; John Funk, Director of Operations for the Bob Hope Veterans Support Program; Joe Balla, Director of the Harbaugh Foundation; and veteran client Tony Piazza, to receive the check from Doug Palmieri, CVS Pharmacy Regional Operations Manager.

Click on the links to check out media coverage of the event on ABC 10, Fox 5 and the San Diego Union Tribune, and view photos from the event on our Facebook page.

Thank you to CVS Health, Linda Hope and to all who attended for your support! Learn more about the Bob Hope Veterans Support Program here.

CVS Check Presentation 2017

L-R: Linda Hope, Chair/CEO of the Bob and Dolores Hope Foundation and The Bob Hope Legacy; Joe Balla, Director, the Harbaugh Foundation; John Funk, Director of Operations, ESSC's Bob Hope Veterans Support Program; Mark Whitley, CEO, Easterseals Southern California; Doug Palmieri, Regional Operations Manager, CVS Pharmacy; and Tony Piazza - the sixth generation of his family to serve in the military and the fourth as a Marine - the 500th veteran to find meaningful employment through ESSC's Bob Hope Veterans Support Program.


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