Paralyzed Veteran Dares Talk Show Host Ellen to Dance with Him — and It’s All for a Great Cause

April 15, 2012 by  
Filed under Believe, Heroes

WASHINGTON, April 10, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — A paralyzed veteran from Woodward, OK, is daring TV talk show host Ellen DeGeneres to dance with him on her show to raise awareness about veterans with disabilities.

U.S. Army veteran Bill Lawson, who is National President of Paralyzed Veterans of America, will be in Los Angeles at the end of April as he completes a month-long nationwide tour to focus public attention on the issues facing veterans and their families. His hope is to “bust some moves” with the TV icon when he’s in LA. Lawson’s dance dare video can be viewed at The video can be tweeted using #VetDaresEllen.

“I am a huge fan of the show and the support Ellen has shown for our military heroes and veterans. She has dared everyone to dance in public, and like millions of folks I made a video to take her dare — and I’m now returning the dare to Ellen to dance with me on her show. More people need to know that there are no barriers on the dance floor, nor should there be in life, for people with disabilities and those of us who use a wheelchair every day,” Lawson said.

April marks Paralyzed Veterans Awareness Month, which highlights the unique challenges facing veterans with spinal cord injury/dysfunction. It spotlights the work of Paralyzed Veterans of America to empower seriously wounded heroes and their families with everything they need to thrive, from quality health care to accessible housing to opportunities for job training and employment.

To learn more about Paralyzed Veterans of America, please visit

About Paralyzed Veterans of America:

Paralyzed Veterans was founded by a group of seriously injured American heroes from the “Greatest Generation” of World War II. They created a nonprofit organization to meet the challenges that they faced back in the 1940s — from a medical community not ready to treat them to an inaccessible world. For more than 66 years, Paralyzed Veterans’ national office and its 34 chapters across the nation have been making America a better place for all veterans and people with disabilities. (


SOURCE  Paralyzed Veterans of America

Jobless Warrior Helps American Military Heroes Find Post Military Work

April 15, 2012 by  
Filed under Believe

CUMBERLAND, R.I., April 11, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — ( — Jobless Warrior, a new online career enhancing service for veterans, is proud to announce its official nationwide launch of services. Veterans can now visit to request free resume help, connect with a career coach, join a job networking group, and more.

Jobless Warrior is a free service that matches military veterans with career enhancement professionals such as coaches, resume writers, job networking groups, and others who have the skills, knowledge, and resources to assist them in navigating today’s difficult job search market. The program aims to assist today’s military hero in launching a new, successful career with private industry organizations.

“The unique aspect of Jobless Warrior,” according to founder JR Rodrigues, “is that we not only show our veterans that the jobs are out there, but we connect them with career professionals for one-on-one coaching and support so they can obtain these jobs. Everyone needs a solid career search strategy, and people often pay large sums of money for career search services. Jobless Warrior is proud to offer these professional services to our heroes for free.”

Jobless Warrior has more than 100 volunteer career professionals registered to provide pro bono, job preparation services to veterans. These providers stand ready to help veterans to decode and translate their military skills, experience, and training into terms easily understood by the civilian employer, a winning situation for both the veterans and the employer who gains a top-notch, valuable veteran employee for their team.

“We want to help all of our veterans get the careers and piece of the American dream that they deserve,” says Rodrigues. “I am eager to watch Jobless Warrior help build that dream for our heroes.”

To be connected with a career service professional, veterans can visit today to create a request for assistance. Veteran requests will be reviewed, and the requestors will be soon matched with a provider who can assist them in their career search.

To learn more about Jobless Warrior, visit the organization website at  Volunteer recruitment is ongoing, and the organization is readily recruiting additional career service professionals and other service providers to join them in the quest to mitigate joblessness among today’s veterans. is a free website service for all veterans and volunteers. Its mission is to end unemployment and underemployment for veterans and to enhance the start of post-military careers by improving job search effectiveness through one-on-one, professional support and other essential career resources.

Acura Teamed With Marvel’s The Avengers as Official Sponsor of Red Carpet World Premiere

April 15, 2012 by  
Filed under Americana, Heroes

HOLLYWOOD, Calif., April 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Thousands watched with amazement as actor Robert Downey Jr. (“Tony Stark”) drove onto the red carpet in a custom Acura-created sports car at the Marvel’s The Avengers Hollywood premiere on Wednesday, April 11, at the El Capitan Theater. The premiere, co-sponsored by Acura, featured militarized S.H.I.E.L.D.-Edition Acura MDX and TL models that were used in the film to escort the actors on Hollywood Blvd.

In addition to Downey’s impressive arrival, Marvel’s The Avengers stars Chris Evans (Captain America), Mark Ruffalo (The Hulk), Chris Hemsworth (Thor) and Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye) also arrived in a fleet of Acura vehicles.

“Acura is excited to continue our presence as the official vehicle of S.H.I.E.L.D. in Marvel films (Captain America: The First Avenger, THOR, and The Avengers),” said Mike Accavitti, Vice President of National Marketing Operations. S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and Marvel’s The Avengers’ characters including Hawkeye and Black Widow can be seen driving militarized Acura vehicles throughout the highly anticipated film, including the MDX, ZDX and TL models, along with a cameo from the entirely new 2013 RDX.

Fans can further immerse themselves in the world of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Marvel’s The Avengers by visiting and testing Avengers-inspired technology mounted to S.H.I.E.L.D.-Edition Acura vehicles. Fans can earn the chance to win movie passes and S.H.I.E.L.D. gear. The grand prize is an all-expense-paid Tony Stark-inspired trip to New York City.

Marvel’s The Avengers opens in theaters nationwide Friday, May 4, 2012.

About Marvel’s The Avengers Marvel Studios presents “Marvel’s The Avengers”—the team up of a lifetime, featuring iconic Marvel Super Heroes Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Hawkeye and Black Widow. When an unexpected enemy emerges that threatens global safety and security, Nick Fury, Director of the international peacekeeping agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D., finds himself in need of a team to pull the world back from the brink of disaster. Spanning the globe, a daring recruitment effort begins.

Starring Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner and Tom Hiddleston, with Stellan Skarsgård and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, directed by Joss Whedon, from a story by Zak Penn and Joss Whedon with screenplay by Joss Whedon, “Marvel’s The Avengers” is based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series “The Avengers,” first published in 1963 and a comics institution ever since. Prepare yourself for an exciting event movie, packed with action and spectacular special effects, when “Marvel’s The Avengers” assemble in summer 2012.

“Marvel’s The Avengers” is presented by Marvel Studios in association with Paramount Pictures. The film is being produced by Marvel Studios’ President Kevin Feige and executive produced by Alan Fine, Jon Favreau, Stan Lee, Louis D’Esposito, Patricia Whitcher, Victoria Alonso and Jeremy Latcham. The film releases May 4, 2012, and is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

About Marvel Entertainment Marvel Entertainment, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, is one of the world’s most prominent character-based entertainment companies, built on a proven library of over 8,000 characters featured in a variety of media over seventy years.  Marvel utilizes its character franchises in entertainment, licensing and publishing.  For more information visit

About Acura Acura offers a full line of technologically advanced performance luxury vehicles through a network of 272 dealers within the United States. The Acura lineup features six distinctive models including the RL luxury performance sedan, the TL performance luxury sedan, the TSX Sport Wagon and sedan, the RDX luxury crossover SUV, the MDX luxury sport utility vehicle and the ZDX four-door sports coupe. For media information please visit,

Great American Teachers Honored with Coal Teacher Achievement Award

April 15, 2012 by  
Filed under Heroes

CHEYENNE, Wyo., April 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Ten Wyoming teachers were honored today as recipients of the prestigious Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award at a ceremony at South High School in Cheyenne.

Arch Coal Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Steven F. Leer, accompanied by Wyoming Governor Matt Mead, Wyoming First Lady Carol Mead, U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, U.S. Representative Cynthia M. Lummis, and Wyoming Department of Public Instruction Superintendent Cindy Hill presented the 12th annual awards to:

Stephany Anderson Cody High School Cody
Kathryn Kintz Sunflower School Gillette
Robin Levin Fort Washakie School Fort Washakie
Meredith McLaughlin University of Wyoming Lab School Laramie
Tammy Beth Needham Sundance Elementary School Sundance
Stella Rios Nowell University of Wyoming Lab School Laramie
Tascha Marie Smith South High School Cheyenne
Jo ann Stevens Rock Springs Junior High School Rock Springs
Carrie Michelle Varga Colter Elementary School Jackson
Cynthia Webb University of Wyoming Lab School Laramie

Each teacher received a personal, unrestricted cash award of $3,500 from Arch Coal, as well as a distinctive trophy and plaque. The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards is Wyoming’s longest running, privately sponsored, statewide classroom teacher recognition program.

“Today, we honor some of Wyoming’s best educators – teachers who make learning come alive in their classrooms,” said Leer. “These teachers are entrusted with our children – to nurture them, guide them and instruct them in the skills they will need to be successful in the future. Arch Coal is proud to recognize their teaching excellence.”

“Each year Arch Coal gives us an opportunity to celebrate the profession of teaching, and to celebrate the unique contributions of 10 Wyoming teachers,” said Gov. Mead. “Carol and I are glad to recognize this year’s outstanding teachers, and to hear their individual stories.”

“One of the best gifts in life is a quality education from a teacher that cares,” said Sen. Enzi. “Wyoming teachers do all they can to prepare our children for the future and I’m pleased to see them recognized.”

“These teachers have not only raised the bar in Wyoming but for our country,” said Rep. Lummis. “The long hours, the genuine student connection and their tireless efforts, not only to educate but to foster tomorrow’s leaders, are truly impressive. Wyoming is fortunate to have educators like these individuals.”

“Having worked with several Arch Coal ‘Teacher Achievement Award’ recipients, I can attest to the value of Arch Coal’s contribution to education,” said Hill. “As an energy-rich state, I think it is incumbent upon our teachers to understand how their core subjects intersect with the many facets of the energy industry. Wyoming’s youth and young adults are very aware of three things:  #1, they live in a state that honors those who honor the land; #2, their state’s natural resources are directly linked to the quality of education they receive; #3, their teachers are some of the best in the world. I applaud Arch Coal for consistently recognizing the outstanding teachers who are helping shape America’s future.”

“The Wyoming Education Association is proud to have been involved with the Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards recognition program since its inception 12 years ago,” said Wyoming Education Association President Kathryn Valido. “We want to extend very heartfelt congratulations to this year’s recipients. Our members salute your efforts and excellence; you are truly an inspiration to all. Continue to provide a world-class education to your students; they are lucky to have you.”

Nominations of the teachers are made by the public, and selection is made by a blue-ribbon panel of the teachers’ peers, all former recipients of the Arch Coal award. Nominated teachers returned exhaustive applications that included their philosophy of teaching, reflections on what motivates them to continue to teach, and creative methods they use to achieve results in their classrooms. The judging panel examined and scored applications multiple times.

The Wyoming Department of Education, the Wyoming Education Association, the Wyoming library community, Taco John’s and Loaf ‘N Jug stores are longstanding supporters of the program.

The Arch Coal Foundation also is a supporter of teacher-recognition and grant programs in West Virginia, Utah and Colorado, as well as a number of other education-related causes.

U.S.-based Arch Coal, Inc. (NYSE:  ACI) is a top five global coal producer and marketer and the most diversified American coal company, with mining complexes across every major U.S. coal supply basin. In 2011, Arch continued to lead the U.S. coal industry in safety performance and environmental compliance among large, diversified producers. Arch’s Wyoming operations – Arch of Wyoming and Thunder Basin Coal Company’s Black Thunder and Coal Creek mines – have a combined workforce of more than 1,800.

Information about each of the 10 current recipients, as well as past recipients, is posted at