Claire Hope and Cal Farmer instigated the idea for a Ventura County Stand Down in 1992. One year later, it became a reality and is in its 24th year.



Claire Hope – Founder & CEO
Claire Hope – Founder & CEO
Dr Cal Farmer
Dr. Cal Farmer-Chair Emeritus Veterans Committee & Entertainment/Ambiance
Jim & Carol Rogers
Jim and Carol Rogers – Volunteer Registration for the American Red Cross

Jim & Carol Rogers have been serving with the Stand Down for many years. They coordinate all Red Cross functions on-site such as volunteer registration, Coffee & Donuts, Sunday Breakfast and volunteers at all the bus stops. In addition, Jim’s VFW Post #9637 provides a van for the weekend; serving for emergencies and backup transportation.

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The Legal Crew: Led by Rod Kodman, center-left


(L) TSgt Maria Isabel Sanchez-Savalas – Medical, Robert McKenrick-Director V.A. West L.A. Region, (R) Claire Hope

TSgt Isabel Savalas of the USAF Air National Guard has perhaps the most complex position at the Stand Down in locating resources and managing:

Basic medical and chiropractic screening with onsite minor treatment and care
•    First aid (three days of continued coverage)
•    Optometry examinations and prescription lenses
•    Podiatry
•    Dental screening and dental care
•    Psychological counseling
•    Medical emergencies are transported to an off-site facility

In the background, Warren & Fran are assistants to the Food Coordinator, Charles Lane. Left/Foreground is Terry Gicking, who organizes the four Ventura County Elks Lodges to provide 200 bag lunches for Sunday’s departure & Monday’s work activities.

The Food Coordinator, Charles Lane arranges for the provision of food and beverage service for participants and staff for Friday-Sunday time period.  The meals are served “chow- line” style.

BELOW:  Charles Lane, backed up by Tom Hartin of T.O.Elks serving lunch.





David Forney
Dave Forney – Resident First Sergeants American Legion Post 48


Gary Erland, Grounds Maintenance, likes the chow line after the hard work on the compound.



(L) Bob Harper – Adopt-A-Vet with Jack Carter (center) and (R) Gary Erland – Security & Grounds Maintenance
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Volunteers from VFW Post 11395 – Adopt-a-Vet Program

Since the beginning of the VCSD in 1993, VFW Post #11395 has been actively supporting the Ventura County Stand Down. They run the Adopt-A-Vet Program where they follow up with veterans who have received help. They also provide other support as required.

Madeline and RT Lee
Madeline Lee – Toiletries, with Husband & Tuskogee Airman RT Lee From American Legion Post #741
RT & Madeline Lee are with the American Legion Post 741 and Auxiliary.  They have been with the Stand Down since the beginning and may be seen anywhere, anytime; RT is now 90.
Connie Biggers of the Ojai American Legion Auxiliary Post 482 coordinates the clothing each year so that veterans remaining for the weekend can select what they need, including sleeping bags, blankets, canteens and other accessories.The clothing is contributed from all over during the entire year.
Connie Biggers
Connie Biggers – Clothing Group


Carl Lanterman and Art Urbano
Carl Lanterman and Art Urbano of the Thousand Oaks Elks coordinate the transportation.
Without transportation, the veterans could not reach Ventura for the many services that they receive from the stand down and then return to their origination.