From military life to business life

Col. (Ret.) Ralph Puckett is a Ranger legend, one of its most decorated officers with two Distinguished Service Crosses and five Purple Hearts. He served with Ken Keen, a Ranger officer who transitioned last year from military service to academia as associate dean of leadership development at the Goizueta Business School. Their 25-year friendship brought Puckett in October to Emory's campus as a keynote speaker to share lessons of leadership with Emory student and alumni veterans. Kicked off by Provost Claire Sterk (pictured here with Col. Puckett), the event was inspired by an alum's efforts to create a resource group to help veterans transition from service to civilian life. It brought representatives from 35 prominent national businesses and organizations headquartered in Atlanta together with more than 80 vets to network and explore career possibilities. The evening marked a chance to connect Emory and other local veterans with business executives and to introduce them to service opportunities for veterans in Atlanta. Given the response, Keen hopes to make the networking dinner an annual event. "We want to use it as a springboard to engage alumni, mentor veteran students, and help vets transition from military to civilian life," he says.