Mission: In 2006, an intra-governmental Working Group was established, focusing on health and wellness, job creation, workforce enrichment, legal and financial services, and benefits for Veterans. Over the years, this coalition has evolved into a referral and collaboration network that gets Veterans and their families the services and supports that they need and reduces red tape.­­  Governor Cooper is supportive of the initiatives undertaken by the Working Group.


Vision: The North Carolina Governor’s Working Group [NCGWG] is charged with facilitating collaboration and coordination among ALL Federal, state and local agency partners that touch a veteran’s life in the state of North Carolina. In short, the “Working Group” is making government work for our vets.

Working Group Chair & Vice Chairs

Larry Hall

Secretary, Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

Dr. Jason Vogler, Vice Chair

Senior Director, Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services, NC Department of Health and Human Services

Napoleon Wallace, Vice Chair

Assistant Secretary, Rural Economic Development

Mark Bilosz, Vice Chair

Director, Veterans Benefits Administration, Winston-Salem Regional Office, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Joseph P. Edger, MHA, FACHE, Vice Chair

Deputy Network Director Retired, Lieutenant Colonel, Army VA Mid-Atlantic Health Care Network

James Prosser, Vice Chair

Assistant Secretary for Veterans Affairs Retired Master Sergeant, Air Force NC Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

A Special Thanks to Our Partners

  • NC Department of Health and Human Services
  • NC Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services
  • NC Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services
  • NC Division of Social Services
  • NC Division of Services to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • Governor’s Institute
  • VA Mid-Atlantic Healthcare Network (VISN 6)
  • Vet Centers
  • Veterans Health Administration
  • Veterans Benefits Administration
  • NC Department of Military & Veterans Affairs
  • NC Institute of Medicine
  • Citizen Soldier Support Program (CSSP)
  • Alcohol/Drug Council of North Carolina
  • NC Area Health Education Centers (AHEC)
  • NC Department of Public Instruction
  • Troops to Teachers
  • NC Health Info (they never attend any more)
  • North Carolina National Guard
  • Brain Injury Association of North Carolina
  • ECU Operation Re-entry North Carolina
  • US Army Reserve
  • Old North State Medical Society
  • University of North Carolina General Administration
  • NC Independent Colleges and Universities
  • NC Community College System
  • Veterans Upward Bound
  • NC Works, NC Department of Commerce
  • NC STRIVE (Student Transition Resource Initiative for Veteran’s Education)
  • NC Foreclosure Prevention Fund
  • Vet Centers (move under VISN 6)
  • Evidence-based Practice Implementation Center (EPIC), Duke University
  • NC Veteran’s Business Association
  • AmericaServes – Charlotte, Raleigh, Coastal, and Western
  • Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Cape Fear Valley
  • Local Management Entities/Managed Care Organizations:
  • Alliance Behavioral Healthcare
  • Cardinal Innovations Healthcare
  • Eastpointe
  • Partners Behavioral Health Management
  • Sandhills Center
  • Trillium Health Resources
  • Vaya Health
  • Behavioral Health Springboard, UNC School of Social Work
  • Operation Home, NC Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
  • NC Coalition to End Homelessness
  • NC for Military Employment (NC4ME)
  • North Carolina Military Business Center
  • National Association of Social Workers – North Carolina Chapter
March 2015

SAMHSA has begun offering Virtual Implementation Academies, and North Carolina was invited to participate in the first one for Substance Use Disorders (SUDs). North Carolina identified 20 individuals to comprise the team, including representatives from the VA; NC National Guard; the NC Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services; the NC Department of Military and Veteran Affairs; the Governor’s Institute on Substance Abuse; the Alcohol and Drug Council of NC; and the Behavioral Healthcare Resource Program, UNC School of Social Work.

September 2014

SAMHSA held a conference on Meeting the Behavioral Health Needs of Service Members, Veterans, and their Families(SMVF) through Workforce Development so that State teams could learn strategies for increasing the skills of the behavioral health workforce to provide services and supports for military-connected individuals.

March 2014

SAMHSA hosted a Military and Veterans’ Families Implementation Academy for State teams across the country to learn about evidence-informed practices for military and veterans’ families and to provide the opportunity for teams to further expand components of existing strategic plans.

September 2012

SAMHSA Policy Academy, State Plan Boot Camp, Preparing States and Communities to Support the Behavioral Health Needs of Service Members, Veterans, and their Families: North Carolina Team Leader, Flo Stein participated in a panel to provide advice and lessons learned to nine new states.

December 2011

SAMHSA Policy Academy, Our Turn to Serve: Building Communities and Strengthening Military Families: A representative from North Carolina served as a member of the State-to-State Innovation Team and provided TA to new state teams.

September 2011

SAMHSA Policy Academy on State Tribal Partnership Summit: North Carolina team identified four strategies to meet the needs of American Indian veterans.

May 2011

2011 SAMHSA Policy Academy, Best Practices for Reclaiming Recovery, Resiliency:  and Readiness: The North Carolina team identified outreach to American Indian veterans and employment as areas for ongoing technical assistance.

October 2010

SAMHSA identified Military Families as one of their eight strategic initiatives and began funding for the Service Members, Veterans, and their Families (SMVF) Technical Assistance (TA) Center.

June 2010

SAMHSA Policy Academy, Returning Service Members, Veterans, and Their FamiliesThe North Carolina Team participated in this policy academy providing mentorship to the seven states and one territory that were first-time participants. North Carolina’s mission and strategic plan were refined.

August 2008

SAMHSA hosted first Policy Academy, Paving the Road Home: The National Behavioral Health Conference and Policy Academy on Returning Veterans and Their Families: North Carolina was one of ten states to be chosen to attend via a competitive application process. The participating states developed a guiding vision, identified key priorities, and developed a strategic plan.

September 2006

North Carolina Stakeholder Summit, hosted by the Governor, and sponsored by the DMH/DD/SAS and MIRECC, VISN 6, US Department of VA, which brought together key state, federal, and local stakeholders: The Governor’s Focus on Servicemembers, Veterans, and Their Families was formed, followed by monthly meetings, which continue to this day. The group has been the source of many new partnerships and initiatives that support the State’s military-connected citizens.

March 2006

North Carolina participated in the SAMHSA/TCA Conference The Road Home: The National Behavioral Health Conference on Returning Veterans and Their Families.