VA and SSA Legal Outreach Specialist
John travels all over the State of Hawaii to help HDLS clients and potential clients understand the disability benefits available to them through the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Social Security Administration. John helps folks with routine paperwork, explains the processes, and works with HDLS clients to get the information needed to pursue their claim. He regularly goes above and beyond what he is asked to do, making a real difference in our clients' lives. John is a crucial and trusted member of the HDLS team.
Before joining HDLS, John was well-known in Hawaii for his work as a case manager for homeless veterans at the Institute for Human Services. He also worked in addiction treatment for more than 10 years, including at The Salvation Army Addiction Treatment Services.
Born and raised in Makaha, John is a graduate of Waianae High School and a U.S. Army infantry veteran. John attended culinary school and had a successful career as a chef prior to his transition to social work. He remains an avid skateboarder and surfer.