Stephen H. Dunkle
Army Veteran, Founder
After founding Veteran Services of New England ("VSONE"), Steve put the organization on hold as he was offered positions with two Connecticut non-profits to join them to create and start-up their Veterans initiatives. HIs research into the needs of the 220,000 Vets in Connecticut led him to recommend the creation of Veterans Rally Point and that it be located within an existing facility in Norwich CT under the umbrella of the not for profit organization, Easterseals Capitol Region and Eastern Connecticut as their Chief Strategy Officer. In April 2017 Steve resigned his position at Easterseals Capitol Region & Eastern CT for personal reasons. As was noted above, he subsequently offered a Senior Director position to joining Oak Hill/Easterseals Connecticut to launch Veterans Count CT, modeled after Veterans Count New Hampshire of which he was a board member for five years and a component of the team that launched their Veteran initiative. After successfully launching Veterans Count CT and again creating statewide recognition for the organization, Oak Hill made the impromptu decision to mothball and cease operations of its Veterans initiatives. With the initial goal being with both organization to create awareness of both organization's involvement in the providing services to Veterans, military members and associated family members, in both circumstances, the initial goals and objectives were not only met but were exceeded. With the closure of Veterans Count CT, the opportunity was created for Steve to refocus on VSONE. With the additional knowledge and ability to use what he had seen as the issues associated with many non-profits, where the spin of selling services to be offered versus being provided is overlaid with the raising of dollars is put in front of the actual providing of needed services, his commitment is to ensure that VSONE is steeped in accuracy, truth and transparency. Where dollars raised are immediately used for the services stated and if the use is not able to be visually evidenced there is a 100% accountability as to their availability.
As a consummate entrepreneur, Steve is able to bring his previous experiences in the non-profit world as well as his over business experience to bear in a manner not typical in the non-profit world where hands-on business experience and accountability is lacking. To that end, one area that he is insuring exists within VSONE is full transparency and accountability by having a three person, disinterested team, not involved with the organization to avoid any potential of conflicts, that reviews all aspects of the organization and is able to testify to the authenticity of its claims and the meeting of its mission. He believes that the lack of oversight by shareholders and 3rd party investors leads non-profits to operate in a manner that would be unacceptable in the private sector.
After his Honorable Discharge from the service as member of the Military Police, he held multiple positions leading him into what has turned out to be a successful career in sales, management, business analytics and personnel management. In 1989, while managing 30+ sales people throughout New England he became restless. Being an entrepreneur and visionary at heart and certainly not risk adverse, he decided to embark out on his own and founded VDI Technologies, Inc.. He had found his niche he was his own boss and able to use the creativity and leadership skills that had been identified in an assessment analysis but never fully exercised. It was these skills that led to the development of healthcare’s first PC based voice capture and document management, patient record delivery system. The company was also a pioneer in the use of speech recognition as a transcription and data aggregation tool which later became a key ingredient in creating a patient's health story in support of what today is known as the electronic medical record and/or computerized patient record.
From the early 1990s through 2012 Steve founded, grew and sold more than five companies as well as acquiring several others primarily in the healthcare technologies and services marketplace. As result of his vision in the healthcare market, in1992 he was nominated and subsequently awarded INC Magazine’s prestigious Entrepreneur of the Year award as well as numerous other industry awards and citations.
His last start-up was Proveros, Inc., in 2003 a healthcare services company. After sustaining an annualized growth rate of in excess of 200%, in 2008 he sold the company to Superior Global Solutions, Inc. in Plano, TX. In March 2010 Steve was asked by the Board of Directors to take over as the company’s CEO. Steve remained as CEO commuting between his home in New Hampshire and the company headquarters in Plano through 2013. During this time he and his time he was able to turn the company around by increasing revenues in excess of 150% annually. This took the company from a loss of in excess of seven digit to net profits in the high seven digits. As the CEO of Superior he was involved with all aspects of the company ensuring that the expectations of its investors and shareholders were not only met but exceeded. With his visionary background in technology he directed the company’s technology development and licensing initiatives, oversaw the company’s HIPAA/HiTech compliance and provided direction to the other officers of the corporation. As with most third party investors their exit strategy included a return on their investment in three to four years. Thus, in 2014 he was tasked to prepare an exit strategy for the investors through acquisition. This subsequently occurred in later the same year. The acquisition included:
As a Vietnam Era Veteran with a service rating himself, he has had an affinity for veterans. In 2007 while still the CEO of Proveros, he looked for and found a void that could be filled to assist military members and their families. The identified need was with military spouses of active duty personnel and veterans wherein due to frequent relocations meaningful employment was evasive. With this realization, he founded and operated Worldwide Health Information Professional Association, Ltd. (WHIPA). A company dedicated to training and subsequent employment of military spouses and significant others within the healthcare documentation market around the world. During it's two years of existence prior to its acquisition under Proveros, training was provided for in excess of 150 individuals as medical language specialists as far away as Germany, Guam, and ROK.
While presently serving as a staff volunteer at the VA Connecticut West Haven VA hospital, (where he also receives services) he also serves on the Board of Directors of Military Veterans Support Collation an organization comprised of the Veteran representatives of most of the Fortune 500 companies in CT. These two positions provide him with a hands-on and insightful perspective not typical in most of the Veteran organizations providing services in the state. For example, realizing that less than 10% of all Veterans know of, understand or how to use the VA Electronic Medical Record (EMR) My HealtheVet in conjunction with his software and technical background he took it upon himself to go through process of being approved by the VA to access secure patient information and as such now is a guest speaker where teaches Vets not just in how to use the EMR but also how to use the iPad, iPhone, tablets and laptops that they will use.
His knowledge is further based and rounded out through his service on the board of directors for many organizations including but not limited to; a two term Chairman of the Medical Transcription Industry Association, Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity and was a featured speaker for over 20 years. He has also served for over four years on the boards of Easterseals New Hampshire, was a key board member assisting in the founding and initial start-up of their Veterans Count initiative. His volunteerism with American Heart Association, The Nathan Project Ministries, various church leadership positions, a case manager at a rescue mission, community advocate for Veterans Administration Connecticut Healthcare System and with the founding and running of several men’s ministries, have all served to provide great insights into the operations and missions of nonprofit organizations. Steve can be contacted at (603) 387-9200 and/or firstname.lastname@example.org.