From the Barracks to the Boardroom

November 09 3 min read

Today’s Veterans are a diverse group in both gender and ethnicity, much like today’s workforce. Employers who recruit and retain Veterans in their workforce gain high-performing employees with leadership, teamwork, and problem-solving skills.

Veterans Day is a time when we honor the service men and women who have bravely served our country. There are an estimated 19 million U.S. Veterans as of this year, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

It’s impossible to say it better the unattributed, but often cited quote: “We don’t know them all, but we owe them all.”

During their military careers, service members receive training in specific technical areas, and valuable nontechnical skills including leadership, decision-making, persistence, communication, supervising, managing, motivating and inspiring others, attention to detail, stress management, dependability, and critical thinking. These are all essential skills when transferring back into civilian life and forward into the workforce.

Stream is proud to have more than 50 self-reported military servicemen and women in our ranks throughout the U.S.

This Veterans Day, four of Stream’s Veterans share some of the experiences and the skills that helped them transition from the military to successful commercial real estate careers.

“Time in the military allowed me to mature and develop skills as both an individual and a team member. Working with people from different countries and backgrounds and being exposed to different experiences helps us to better understand ourselves and one another. The military taught me to always ask questions and never stop learning. The same is true at Stream, there is always something new to learn, and here, I can utilize a lot of the knowledge I gained in my Navy service. Comparable to the Navy, it’s a wonderful experience to pass that knowledge and set of skills on to others within our team so we can collectively learn and develop as individuals to better support our teams.”

Alison Seaton, Critical Facilities Manager, Stream Data Centers

“I was very fortunate to graduate from the Naval Academy and then spend eight years (five active and three in the reserves) as an officer in the Marine Corps. Leading Marines helped prepare me to transition into the private sector and my current role as Managing Director of Stream’s Office Leasing Team in Dallas. All Marines are taught to quickly improvise, adapt, and overcome any challenges presented to them. My specialty was as an Aviation Intelligence and Targeting Officer, and as a 27-year-old Captain, I was entrusted with the role of being the lead targeting officer for the aircraft carrier USS Constellation. I helped plan and carry out over 10 separate missions over Iraq in support of Operation Southern Watch in 1999/2000.  My time in the Corps made me who I am today, and I would not trade that experience for the world.”


JJ Leonard, Managing Director and Partner in Stream’s Dallas office

“My experience is that once a veteran tackles the steep learning curve of building a foundation in their new career, the extraordinary interpersonal, leadership, communication, and organizational skills picked up in the military start to shine and catapult those individuals to the top of their fields. The loyalty, entrepreneurial spirit, and work ethic of many veterans that enter the business world cannot be matched.”  

Bret Morriss, Managing Director in Stream’s San Diego office

“The Marine Corps taught me how and why to lead by example. People who work for you will follow your example, no matter what you tell them to do. I set the example for the culture and mentality I want my team to have. I never ask my team to do anything I am not willing to do. In the Marine Corps, I helped my Marines fill hundreds of sandbags and haul them up five floors. It is amazing what your team will do when you treat them with respect and always lead by example. Integrity is another trait emphasized in the Marine Corps. Doing the right thing even when no one is watching. This has impacted the way I conduct myself personally and professionally and in my work in the construction industry. Acting with integrity guides me like a compass in my daily life.”

Eric Kornfuehrer, Director of Interiors Construction in Stream’s Houston office

Many employers recognize the value of adding Veterans to their workforce. According to a CareerBuilder survey, two in five employers are actively recruiting U.S. Veterans for their organization over the next 12 months.

This Veterans Day 2021, Stream honors those who have defended the American people and the freedoms we are all fortunate to enjoy. We appreciate the values, leadership, and unique skills our service members bring to the workplace—and while we appreciate them every day—today, we say thank you and Happy Veterans Day!