Jen Fullmer, a second year graduate student at Kaplan University, spent 24 years serving in the United States Air Force and immediately began serving the communities of Maine when she came home at the end of 2015. She is actively engaged in addressing the root causes of homelessness, while working with different organizations to alleviate the effects of homelessness. During the past year, she has been building a new nonprofit focused on helping military members prepare early for a successful transition to Maine, serving on the Board of a nonprofit focused on poverty alleviation, serving on a committee of her local Main Street organization, and personally supporting a chronically homeless veteran on a successful six-month journey from the street to stabilized subsidized housing. She also co-chairs the York County Maine Military and Community Network which is part of a state-wide network of services and concerned citizens who want to understand, prevent, and help address the challenges faced by current and former military members and their families, as well as their communities. Jen Fullmer is a servant leader who is dedicated to collaborative community strategies that enable realistic and lasting positive impacts.
I served our country for 24 years and I commit the rest of my life to serving the communities of Maine. For the past year, I have been building a new Maine nonprofit called Boots2Roots. Boots2Roots provides personalized networking, job search, and preparation for soon-to-be veterans. It is the only organization in Maine specifically focused on connecting with active duty military members before they separate because early preparation is key to financial stability and a smooth transition to civilian life. This mission addresses a root cause, as veteran unemployment can rapidly begin the spiral toward instability and homelessness. I also serve those currently in this spiral on the Board for Seeds of Hope Neighborhood Center and as Co-Chair of the York County Maine Military and Community Network. I became passionate about homelessness in 2014 in Arlington, Virginia. I started a weekend running route (my FIN run...Friends in Need) that brought me by multiple known homeless hang-out spots and I got to know some wonderful human beings. These relationships shaped my life's focus and I believe that no amount of money thrown at a human problem will serve as a solution unless members of the community collaboratively roll up their sleeves.