Serving all who served.

If you’ve served in the military and you’re in need of assistance, Veterans Leadership Program is here to help. From housing and career development to wellness and supportive services, our passion is helping Veterans reach their fullest potential.


The vision of Veterans Leadership Program is that every Veteran of the United States Military reach their fullest potential as citizens of the Nation that they have so proudly served. We are proud to serve all who served, regardless of VA eligibility, discharge status or length of service.

We have successfully made an impact on over 8,300 Veterans annually in 30 counties across Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio.

Our History: Operation Back Home

Mills were closing. Manufacturing jobs were disappearing. Many Veterans were out of work and out of hope. It was at this time that Vietnam Veterans took it upon themselves to step up as leaders and provide job assistance and supportive services to their peers who were displaced in the changing economy. They called it Vietnam Veterans Leadership Program (VVLP). During the Reagan Administration, Vietnam Veterans Leadership Program had an office in all 50 states. To this day, only two remain, including our organization and an organization in Texas.

In 1993, VLP expanded its job search and career counseling program into the PA Laurel Highlands area by opening an office in Johnstown, PA, which is currently located in the Hiram G. Andrews Center.

In 2005, the Pittsburgh office moved to the South Side and changed the organization’s name to Veterans Leadership Program of Western Pennsylvania to show that all Veterans are welcome. For the past 40 years, Veterans Leadership Program (VLP) has fulfilled its mission of empowering Veterans and their families navigating the transitions, regardless of era of war, Veterans Affairs (VA) eligibility or discharge status. Our Service Coordinators work one-on-one with Veterans to assess their situation and to create goals that lead to self-sufficiency and financial sustainability.

In August 2016, VLP moved its offices to the Strip District to accommodate its growth in the last decade.

In 2022, VLP expanded its career development and housing programs into the Erie Veterans Administration (VA) catchment area by opening an office in Erie, PA, which is currently located at 406 West 8th Street Erie, PA 16502.

Our Leadership Team

Ben Stahl, D.Sc.
Chief Executive Officer
Toshua Jarrett, MS
Chief Development Officer
Janine Wytovich, LSW
Chief Operating Officer
Samantha Brillon, MA
Quality Control Director
Dana Curtin
Finance Director
Dana Fox
Erie Regional Director
Randy Levander
Business Development Director
Kim Portser
Johnstown - Altoona Regional Director
Drew Williams, MBA
Veteran Career Development Director

Board of Directors

Veterans Leadership Program is proud to have an outstanding group of community leaders serving on our Board of Directors. Each of our board members, many of whom are Veterans, are committed and dedicated to VLP’s staff and Veterans. Through a variety of committees, board members stay engaged and provide additional support to ensure that VLP has the resources and opportunities to grow and to fulfill its mission in the community.

  • Damien Gottschalk, Chair
  • Jonathan Bliss, Ph.D., Vice Chair
  • Sam Becherer, Treasurer
  • Anthony Groff, Secretary
  • Tim Bidlack
  • Jamie Danna
  • Joshua Elder
  • Tom James
  • Matthew Kitson
  • Chad Polen
  • David Ross
  • James Urban
  • Stacey Vaccaro, Ph.D.
  • OPE0017358

We’re here to serve.

Veterans Leadership Program (VLP) is Pennsylvania’s premier Veteran-centric 501(c)3 (25-1434643) organization providing essential services to Veterans and their families. Whether you’re looking for help or you want to get involved with VLP’s mission, please reach out for more information and we’ll get you the resources you need as soon as possible.