Compassion-First Pet Hospitals Partners with the Army PaYS ProgramCompassion-First Pet Hospitals logo

Story by Audra Jones and Lauren Carroll

The U.S. Army Partnership for Youth Success (PaYS) team would like to welcome Compassion- First Pet Hospitals as one of our newest partners. Notably, Compassion- First Pet Hospitals is the first veterinary hospital partner in our 20+ year history.

Founded in 2014, Compassion-First is a network of 45 specialty and emergency veterinary hospitals across the country that are driven to elevate veterinary medicine through collaboration, empowerment, integrity, community and kindness. Founder John Payne views the collaborative group of hospitals as a family united by a common passion to put pets and their owners at the center of care. Each Compassion-First hospital retains their brand equity, uniqueness, integrity and medical decisions and is committed to a collective desire to lead with compassion to enable pets and their families to have happier moments together. Today, Compassion-First has more than 3,000 veterinary professionals, including more than 300 specialists, 200 ER doctors and has more than 14,000 general practice referral partners across 7,500 referral hospitals.

Each Compassion-First hospital is part of the fabric of their local communities and is dedicated to providing exceptional veterinary care for pets coupled by an unparalleled client experience for their owners. Their commitment to fostering awareness of and providing opportunities in veterinary medicine for veterans is something they greatly value and are honored to be the very first veterinary partner for the U.S. Army PaYS Program.

To learn more about Compassion-First Pet Hospitals, visit

The Army PaYS Story of Armando Contreras and Sonsray, Inc.PVT Armando Contreras and Joanna Verstegui pose for a photo

Story by Corin-Manning Gillens
Photo by Joanna Verstegui

Last year, Armando Contreras considered enlisting in the U.S. Army. When he made an appointment with Army Recruiter, SSG Julian Do at the Westminster (CA) Recruiting Station, he asked his mother, Joanna Verstegui to attend the meeting and be involved in the process. During that meeting, SSG Do presented the features and benefits of an Army enlistment to Armando and his mom. One of the incentives that caught the attention of Joanna, who is the Director of Human Resources at Sonsray, Inc., was the Army PaYS program.

Right - PVT Armando Contreras and Joanna Verstegui pose for a photo

"I was very interested because we at Sonsray, Inc. are always looking for technicians and what a great way to partner with the Army and help Veterans find jobs. I asked the Recruiter how I could include my company on that list and he told me to apply online at" - Joanna Verstegui

Sonsray, Inc. is the largest independent full-service rental and leasing company in California, Nevada and Arizona specializing only in refrigerated equipment for transportation and storage.

Sonsray logo PaYS Marketer, Corin-Manning Gillens received a lead on Sonsray, Inc. from the PaYS helpdesk and reached out to Yami Gonzalez, Corporate Recruiter at Sonsray. They collaborated and ultimately made Sonsray, Inc. an official PaYS partner in January 2020. Sonsray, Inc. made a public announcement of their partnership with Army PaYS during a live ceremony held on November 13, 2020 in Santa Fe Springs, CA.

During a conference call, Corin-Manning had the opportunity to speak with Joanna Verstegui and she informed him that her son, Armando enlisted in the Army as an Unmanned Aircraft System Operator (MOS 15W) and he is currently stationed at Fort Bliss in El Paso, TX. Furthermore, Ms. Verstegui says that "Armando is enjoying Army life and doing very well".

The PaYS Program would like to recognize SSG Julian Do, the Westminster Army Recruiting Station and the entire Los Angeles Recruiting Battalion for promoting awareness of PaYS and supporting the program by ensuring Soldiers are informed and select PaYS partners during the enlistment process. Keep up the great work!


Dear PaYS Partners,

As we take time this month to honor all the brave men and women among us who, at one time or another, put on the uniform and served to protect our country, our liberty and our lives; the PaYS Team says thank you to all Veterans, Soldiers and their families.

The PaYS Team would also like to thank all of our partners and stakeholders who stay committed to supporting Veterans.

This month's PaYS signing ceremonies are with:

ANS Advanced Network Services, LLC,

Smiths Detection, Inc.,

Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs,

UW Health,

Quartz Health,

SwedishAmerican Health,

UnityPoint Health-Meriter,

Cygnus Home Service, LLC,

Solution One Industries, LLC,

Dominion Energy, LLC,

Sonsray, Inc.,

Compassion First Pet Hospitals,

Altice USA.

If your organization is interested in conducting a ceremony, please reach out to your PaYS Regional Marketer for more information. All ceremonial videos and photos can be viewed on the PaYS social media platform.

Regional Army PaYS Marketing Analysts:

Antonio Johnson (Senior Marketer)
(502) 378-8054

Audra Jones (Northeast Region)
(773) 418-6229

Samuel Armstrong (Southeast Region)
(301) 717-8508

Davin Bentley (Midwest Region)
(614) 886-0270

Donna Morales (Midwest Region)
(571) 338-2327

Crancena Ross (Southwest Region)
(410) 206-0413

Anthony Velasco (Southwest Region)
(757) 270-6556

Corin Gillens (West Coast Region)
(843) 909-6037

Remember to annotate your PaYS Soldiers hires and interviews into the PIX database, visit and like our Facebook page,, follow us on Instagram @armypaysprogram and all our social media platforms to share in all of our events. Send us your good news stories, job vacancies, etc., and we will highlight, at no cost, on all our social media sites. To participate in any Army recruiting event, don't forget to reach out to your regional PaYS marketing analyst.

For more information on PaYS program, visit our website at

It PaYS to partner with the US Army!

Troy L. Nattress
PaYS Program Manager

USAREC plays key role in success of Army's FY20 end strength missionUSAREC graphic

USAREC Public Affairs


FORT KNOX, Ky., Oct. 9, 2020

Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. Army Recruiting Command successfully accessed enough new recruits to support the Regular Army end strength goal for fiscal 2020.

Recruiting NCOs at about 1,400 locations around the world helped 62,150 individuals enlist and begin training to become a Soldier in the U.S. Army this year.

The accessions mission is one of three pillars the Army uses to achieve its end strength goal, which was 485,000 for fiscal 2020.

"The Army achieves its end strength through a balance of a couple of things - retention of current Soldiers, recruitment and management of attrition," said Lt. Gen. Gary Brito, the Department of the Army's deputy chief of staff, G1. "For those who choose to continue to serve, we work with them on staying in the Army and offer them many opportunities. We also bring in new Soldiers as well. We also factor in the attrition of Soldiers, Soldiers who may have enough time in service and choose to retire or some that after they do their initial enlistment, they decide to leave."

The accessions mission can flex throughout the year, depending on the outcome of the other two Army end strength pillars, according to Maj. Gen. Kevin Vereen, the commanding general for USAREC.

"COVID-19 caused a change to retention and attrition that was not predicted. More people wanted to stay in the Army, which meant we needed fewer people to enlist than we initially expected," Vereen said.

Prior to the pandemic, USAREC had exceeded every monthly recruiting goal and was seeing the highest enlistment rates since 2014. Additionally, quality was up 4 percent from the previous fiscal year.

"The strong start to the FY was crucial to our mission success this year," Vereen said. "March through May were very challenging months, as we had to quickly adjust how we communicated with prospects, how we processed applicants, and how we shipped Future Soldiers. We needed to continue to recruit to maintain the Army's readiness, but the priority for us all was the safety of our Soldiers, their families, and the individuals we were processing to join our team."

On March 18, USAREC shifted to all-virtual operations across the entire command in order to limit in-person contact. From April 6-19, Training and Doctrine Command paused all shipping of Future Soldiers to basic training in order to ensure it had appropriate measures in place to protect its staff and trainees during the pandemic.

The Army worked quickly to develop policies and procedures that would allow recruiting NCOs to complete 90 percent of applicant processing virtually.

By May 2020, shipping had increased again and some recruiting stations were able to use their physical locations for processing, depending on the situation in the local area.

"We made a lot of changes in a short period of time," Vereen said. "We have seen how valuable these changes are for our personnel, and we will continue to use them when the pandemic is over as well as work to do even more to streamline the process."

Despite the shipping pause and the period of adjustment to improve virtual processing, USAREC was able to get the accessions mission back on track in the fourth quarter. Not only did the command successfully provide the required numbers, but it also provided a quality and diverse group of new recruits.

"Our quality marks were 2.4 percent higher than last year, demonstrating our commitment to seeking top talent for our Army," Vereen said. "We are also continuing to focus on accessing a diverse force that is representative of the nation we serve - 47 percent of our Regular Army recruits in FY20 represented minority populations."

The ability of recruiting NCOs to adapt quickly and find creative ways to reach America without physical events and face-to-face meetings played a significant role in the command's success this year, according to Vereen. The NCOs immediately started hosting virtual fitness challenges and live question-and-answer sessions on social media and began conducting Army interviews on video chat platforms to continue telling the Army story in a socially distant environment.

The Army as a whole also got creative in support of the accessions mission. The first Army-wide national recruiting event, Army National Hiring Days, was held June 30-July 2 to help boost the Army's message online. The event drew more than 30,000 leads and increased the number of interviews conducted by 18 percent over the same timeframe last year. The contacts made during the event increased the accessions in August and September 2020 and will continue to lead to new contracts for at least the next six months in fiscal 2021, according to Vereen.

"While COVID-19 certainly presented significant challenges for us, we overcame them with new ideas that are now paving the way for how we will continue to do business in the future," Vereen said. "I am proud of what our team was able to accomplish this year. The flexibility, adaptability and creativity of our recruiting NCOs, led by outstanding company, battalion, and brigade leaders enabled our success."

Military family

Military Family Appreciation Month

Military Family Appreciation Month is a time set aside to recognize you, the military family. Military families know what it means to serve. Every day, you get up and support your service member, standing by during long Training exercises and deployments. You know the risks, but you accept this life of service anyway.

You know service is an honor.

You are the backbone of our military. You are the quiet, but steady fuel at home that keeps the fire burning. You keep track of military pay, benefits and news, because you know they make a daily difference in your life.

Serving is just what you do.

Traditionally, the president signs a proclamation recognizing that service and declaring November as Military Family Month. Over the month, families just like yours are honored and recognized for their commitment and contributions in support of our military and nation.

Native American Heritage Month

Source:,important%20contributions%20of%20Native%20people. NAHM graphic

November is Native American Heritage Month, or as it is commonly referred to, American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month.

The month is a time to celebrate rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and to acknowledge the important contributions of Native people. Heritage Month is also an opportune time to educate the general public about tribes, to raise a general awareness about the unique challenges Native people have faced both historically and in the present, and the ways in which tribal citizens have worked to conquer these challenges.

Akima logo

In honor of Native American Heritage Month, Army PaYS is highlighting an Alaska Native partner, Akima, LLC. Akima is headquartered in Herndon, VA and maintains a portfolio of more than 40 small business, 8(a) companies, and other operating organizations that deliver simplified and accelerated access to the products and services agencies need to ensure mission success.
LTC Amanda Iden and Scott Rauer pose with the PaYS Certificate of Participation during the Akima/PaYS ceremony at Fort Belvoir, VA.
Sharing, hard work, and cooperation are critical values in the NANA region. At Akima, they reflect those values by giving back both in the region and in the communities in which our employees live and work. Their work enables the Iñupiat of the NANA region of Alaska to provide for their community in many ways. From cultural preservation to employment opportunities to education, their shareholders have created an asset that will sustain them for generations to come.

Akima supports a variety of programs focused on providing assistance to small businesses and economic initiatives in the NANA region, including grants, loans, human capital development, and infrastructure such as hotels and hospitals.

In April 2019, Akima signed a partnership agreement with the Army PaYS program and continues to provide job opportunities for Veterans.

Left - LTC Amanda Iden and Scott Rauer pose with the PaYS Certificate of Participation during the Akima/PaYS ceremony at Fort Belvoir, VA.

Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. Joins the Army PaYS Program Mr. Craig A. Janus, SVP and General Manager of the National Security Group, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc., and LTC Nathan G. Allard, Battalion Commander, Baltimore Recruiting Battalion

Story and photos by: Alisha Reneau

On November 4, 2020, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. (PSS) signed a partnership agreement with the Army PaYS program during a live ceremony. The ceremony was held in Reston, VA at the PSS headquarters, outdoors while everyone practiced social distancing. CPT Thien Vu, Company Commander, Potomac Recruiting Company provided the opening remarks and introduced LTC Nathan G. Allard, Battalion Commander, Baltimore Recruiting Battalion. LTC Allard expressed "For our Future Soldiers, PaYS secures a future employment opportunity upon their completion of Army service requirements." His remarks were followed by Mr. James C. Ballard, Chairman, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. who shared, "As a former Military person, I know the importance of the Military and what they can do for you." Mr. Ballard introduced the guest speaker Mr. Craig A. Janus, SVP and General Manager of the National Security Group, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. who also provided remarks and shared how excited the company is to have joined the PaYS program.
Mr. James C. Ballard, Chairman, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc., Mr. Craig A. Janus, SVP and General Manager of the National Security Group, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc., and LTC Nathan G. Allard, Battalion Commander, Baltimore Recruiting Battalion

Right - Mr. Craig A. Janus, SVP and General Manager of the National Security Group, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc., and LTC Nathan G. Allard, Battalion Commander, Baltimore Recruiting Battalion

Left - Mr. James C. Ballard, Chairman, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc., Mr. Craig A. Janus, SVP and General Manager of the National Security Group, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc., and LTC Nathan G. Allard, Battalion Commander, Baltimore Recruiting Battalion

Below right - Babs Doherty, President, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. and LTC Allard

Babs Doherty, President, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. and LTC Allard

Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. logo

Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. (PSS) is a professional and technical services company dedicated to serving the U.S. Federal Government. PSS' business includes the management, development, and operation of the industry's most advanced information technologies, as well as the application of those and other technologies to create and deliver complete solutions.

The ceremony concluded with LTC Allard and Mr. Ballard signing the memorandum of agreement and a cake cutting between Babs Doherty, President, Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. and LTC Allard.

Purdy Mobility logo

The Army PaYS Program Welcomes Purdy Mobility as a New Partner

Story and Photos by: Alisha Reneau

Purdy Mobility recently solidified their partnership with the Army PaYS program during a live ceremony held at the South Toyota dealership in Dallas, TX. This was PaYS' first live signing ceremony since the pandemic, and social distancing safety practices were enforced.

The ceremony was narrated by the Dallas Army Recruiting Company Commander, CPT Teronica Garret, and followed with remarks from Battalion Commander, LTC Samuel Jungman and Harold Hurst, COO, Purdy Mobility. LTC Jungman states, "The PaYS program supports the Army's recruiting mission and brand awareness through partnership with corporate, federal, state and local agencies."

Mr. Harold Hurst, COO, Purdy Mobility, and Battalion Commander, Samuel JungmanMr. Harold Hurst, COO, Purdy Mobility, and Battalion Commander, Samuel Jungman During his remarks, Mr. Hurst says, "We are proud to be signing with this wonderful program that helps U.S. Army Veterans find employment."

Left and right - Mr. Harold Hurst, COO, Purdy Mobility, and Battalion Commander, Samuel Jungman

Purdy Motor Group (PMG) was founded on January 7, 1957 and is the fourth oldest distributor of Toyota in the world. Since its inception, the organization has focused on implementing innovative and technological processes within its services. In 2019, as part of its new business strategy, Purdy Motor Group re-branded itself under the umbrella of Purdy Mobility for all U.S. operations. Purdy Mobility currently operates three stores including Bryan College Station Toyota, South Toyota (Dallas, TX), and Huntsville Toyota (Huntsville, AL).

Purdy Mobility is looking forward to building their team with qualified PaYS Soldiers, visit for career opportunities.

PaYS plaque

Army PaYS Program Welcomes New Partners During Veterans Day Week

Story and Photos by: Alisha Reneau

Every year on November 11th, Veterans Day honors Military Veterans-persons who have served in the United States Armed Forces. The federal holiday is intended to thank Veterans for their service and sacrifice.

This year during the week of Veteran's Day, the Army PaYS program and our partners hosted virtual signing ceremonies that were broadcasted live on Facebook as well as in-person ceremonies that took place at our partners' headquarters. The ceremonies conducted for these companies announced their official partnership agreements with the Army PaYS program.

Although the pandemic has changed the way we do business, the PaYS Team continues to pursue new partnerships and add quality companies with a passion for hiring Veterans. Each company stands on being Veteran-friendly, and is making it a priority to provide Veterans with career opportunities.

Virtual signing ceremonies are a new way of announcing partnerships and the PaYS Team is grateful for all the hard work and dedication from everyone who participated from: UW Health, SwedishAmerican Health, Quartz Health, UnityPoint Health-Meriter, ANS Advanced Network Services, LLC, Dominion Energy, LLC and Smiths Detection, Inc. The live ceremonies were hosted by Solution One Industries, Inc. (Killeen, TX) and Sonsray, Inc. (Santa Fe Springs, CA)

Partner logos

We would like to acknowledge the Commanders from the following recruiting battalions that provided remarks and video footage.

LTC Collin K. Keenan, Commander, Milwaukee Recruiting Battalion

LTC Martin Debock, Commander, Albany Recruiting Battalion

LTC Nathan G. Allard, Commander, Baltimore Recruiting Battalion

LTC Erik S. Peterson, Commander, Richmond Recruiting Battalion

LTC Samuel J. Jungman, Commander, Dallas Recruiting Battalion

LTC Garrett J. Kaye, Commander, Los Angeles Recruiting Battalion

A Big Thank You to these Partners Celebrating their November PaYS Anniversaries:

Schneider National, Inc. 14-Nov-00 Baltimore County Police Department 7-Nov-03 Colas, Inc. 7-Nov-03 Dakota Electric Association 25-Nov-03 Harley-Davidson Motor Company 25-Nov-03 State of Wisconsin 8-Nov-04 Austin Police Department 8-Nov-04 Superior Bulk Logistics, Inc. 29-Nov-04 NES Rentals Holdings, Inc. 1-Nov-05 Compressor Systems, Inc. 2-Nov-05 State of Maryland Dept. of Public Safety & Correctional Services 17-Nov-05 Kubricky Construction 17-Nov-05 Polk County Sheriff's Office 18-Nov-05 Citicorp Credit Services, Inc. (USA) 17-Nov-06 Martin County Sheriff's Office (Florida) 28-Nov-06 Glenn O. Hawbaker, Inc. 18-Nov-07 Comfort Systems, USA 30-Nov-07 Tecta America Corp. 9-Nov-08 J. B. Hunt Transportation, Inc. 24-Nov-09 Louisiana Dept. of Revenue 24-Nov-09 Aultman Health Foundation 4-Nov-10 Cleveland Track Material, Inc. 4-Nov-10 Southern Company Services, Inc. 7-Nov-10 Booz Allen Hamilton 7-Nov-10 Fuel Delivery Services, Inc. 17-Nov-10 Groendyke Transport, Inc. 11-Nov-12 GE Healthcare 11-Nov-12 EAN Holdings, LLC 20-Nov-12 Summit County Sheriff's Office 20-Nov-12 CFAN 05-Nov-13 ZipRealty 20-Nov-13 Heartland Employment Services, LLC 20-Nov-13 MTA-NYC Transit 21-Nov-13 Columbia College Hollywood 21-Nov-13 MHC Kenworth 17-Nov-14 Custom Company, Inc. 17-Nov-14 Jax Home Health, Inc. 1-Nov-16 Trademark Metals Recycling, LLC 7-Nov-16 Westgate Resort 11-Nov-16 City of Warner Robins 29-Nov-16 BlueSky Communication 6-Nov-17 Quantum Research International 6-Nov-17 Chattanooga Police Department 6-Nov-17 RTST Express, Inc. 6-Nov-17 DynCorp International LLC 12-Nov-17 Anchorage Police Department 20-Nov-17 Olios Health and Affiliated Companies 20-Nov-17 Gurney Trucking, Inc. 20-Nov-17 M&G Jewelers, Inc. 29-Nov-17 Community Care Ambulance 29-Nov-17 Lafarge Holcim 29-Nov-17 RPM Transportion, Inc. 8-Nov-18 Dignity Health 8-Nov-18 Huntington Ingalls Industries 8-Nov-18 Raymond Handling Solution 11-Nov-18 Midwest Express, Inc. 16-Nov-18 Skyline MegaFest, LLC 16-Nov-18 Akima, LLC 26-Nov-18 Cedar-Sinai Medical Center 26-Nov-18 SWD Urethane Co. 26-Nov-18 City of Bluefield, West Virgina 8-Nov-19 Quality Manufacturing Corporation 8-Nov-19 Terrapin Beer Company, LLC 8-Nov-19 Waldinger Corporation 8-Nov-19 Finster Courier, Inc. dba Elite Express 8-Nov-19 Exide Technologies 8-Nov-19 Dominion Energy, Inc. 8-Nov-19 G & W Equipment 20-Nov-19 Butcher Air Conditioning 21-Nov-19 Unity Point Health 21-Nov-19



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