Defense, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee

With major partners from the defense industry, non-profits specializing in veteran affairs and government agencies among others, the committee engages in every component of the military and veterans spectrum, with special attention paid to the well-being of veterans as a substantial component of the regional workforce.

The Defense, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee meets the first Wednesday of each month from 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. in the Chamber office located at 402 West Broadway, Suite 1000.

If you’re interested in learning more about our policy committees or would like to join the Defense, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee, contact Sophie Barnhorst at

Committee Activities

  • Veteran Hiring Honor Roll Program: This effort was launched by the committee to incentivize hiring of veterans by Chamber members.
  • Vets’ Community Connections: The Chamber is a proud founding partner of this national initiative that has culminated in an exciting pilot project in San Diego. As one of two cities across the country originally chosen for this effort, we have sponsored a study on what vets and their families really need to establish healthy, significant lives within our community. The Chamber is now facilitating business involvement connecting veterans to the basic things that make our communities as vibrant as they are, and ensuring that our businesses have a chance to say thank you for their service.
  • Board membership on the San Diego Military Affairs Council and continued partnership with the organization and its efforts.
  • The Chamber is also on the Governing Council of zero8Hundred. This resource proactively links transitioning military families to a broad range of resources and opportunities in the community, helping them successfully transition to civilian life.
  • VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) Voucher Promotion: San Diego’s substantial homeless population includes a large number of veterans. To facilitate housing support for those veterans the county utilizes VASH Vouchers under the Department of Housing and Urban Development. These vouchers combine HUD rental assistance with case management and service delivery by the Department of Veteran Affairs. While this is an important tool to place veterans and their families into stable housing, the vouchers are often priced too low to be accepted in the high-rent market, and misconceptions around housing vouchers deter landlords from renting to these individuals. The Chamber is engaged in a campaign to both raise awareness about this program and press the Federal government to adjust the amount of these vouchers.

Current committee members

Chair: Sean Mahoney
Vice Chair: Daniel Hazard