Elizabeth Dole Foundation Announces 2023 Class of Dole Caregiver Fellows
Military caregivers from across the nation selected to represent their communities and advocate on behalf of 5.5 million Americans caring for wounded, ill, or injured veterans
Washington, D.C. (May 2, 2023) – The Elizabeth Dole Foundation has announced the 2023 class of Dole Caregiver Fellows. Fourteen military and veteran caregivers will join more than 250 past and present Dole Caregiver Fellows who represent all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. These fellows bring attention to the tremendous challenges facing the spouses, parents, family members, and other loved ones who provide more than $14 billion in voluntary care for wounded, ill, and injured service members and veterans every year.
Dole Caregiver Fellows are leaders, community organizers, and advocates for military caregivers and their families in their states and nationwide. They are trained by the Foundation and empowered to share their stories directly with national leaders in the White House, Congress, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and other government agencies, as well as decision makers in the business, entertainment, faith, and nonprofit communities. The Fellows guide the Foundation, its coalition partners, and government and community leaders on the most pressing issues concerning military caregivers and influence positive change on behalf of these hidden heroes.
“With this class of fellows, we are hearing about a wider range of struggles that military and veteran caregivers face, including from those caring for someone who served before the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,” said Steve Schwab, CEO of the Elizabeth Dole Foundation. “The Fellows are the heart and soul of our work, and we are committed to providing the training, tools, and support these hidden heroes need to not only continue to advocate for their veterans but for their peer caregivers too.”
Senator Elizabeth Dole created the Dole Caregiver Fellows program in 2012 to directly engage military and veteran caregivers in the Foundation’s mission. The 2023 class represents 11 states and includes a retired military chaplain caring for his wife who lost her hearing in Afghanistan and now helps her advocate for active duty service members and veterans; a reverend caring for her aunt who was one of the first black women to serve in the Air Force during the Korean War; and a son who dropped out of the workforce eight months into his new career at age 28 to move cross country and care for his father whose cancer was caused by toxic exposure during his Naval service.
The 2023 Dole Caregiver Fellows include:
- Susan Graham – Arizona
- Ashley Lee – Florida
- Jo Ann Bachand – Florida
- Rev. Burdette Lowe – Georgia
- Lynnette Canedy – Kentucky
- Shawn Lopez – Maryland
- Belinda Edwards – Maryland
- Justina Crawford – Missouri
- Victoria Chall – North Carolina
- Chris Traumer – New York
- Lillian Hunter – Pennsylvania
- Adrienne Hazard – Rhode Island
- Robert Evans – Texas
- Michael Bowles – Texas
To schedule an interview with a 2023 Dole Caregiver Fellow, or with a spokesperson from the Elizabeth Dole Foundation, please contact Austin Courtney at [email protected].