Roger Staubach’s Road to Dallas
A Conversation with former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Roger Staubach, Vietnam Veteran and founder of Allies in Service.
The U.S. Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs estimate that approximately 200,000 service members transition from the military each year – more than 89,000 of them in Texas. Some of those servicemen and women will choose to pursue a new degree or start a small business, but many will decide to enter the civilian workforce.
Since 2011, JPMorgan Chase has hired more than 10,000 veterans – nearly 10% of those hires made in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. We find tremendous value in the skills, leadership and character that veterans bring to our firm – and we have a special partner in the region who exemplifies these traits.
Ross Brown, JPMorgan Chase's Head of Military and Veterans Affairs, recently spoke with former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Roger Staubach, a Vietnam-era veteran committed to serving his fellow vets.
Roger, it is fair to say you’ve accomplished quite a few things and had more than one career in your life. How many careers would you say that you’ve had?
ROGER STAUBACH: As a boy in high school, I worked during the summer to earn extra money. One summer I worked for a blacktop company, one summer I worked for a refrigeration company and one summer I was a plumber’s gopher. I decided very quickly that hard labor was not for me. I have much respect for anyone doing these jobs for a living, but it was extremely hard work for a young boy in Cincinnati.
I had my military career at the United States Naval Academy and then as a Supply Chain Officer in Vietnam. This career shaped the rest of my life. It taught me discipline and molded me as a leader. This career would inform the respect I have for our military today. Being in the military taught me the traits I would need to succeed on the football field and in the boardroom. /p>
Most probably know me from my years in the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys. It was a great career and a special time in my life, but I knew I would not play football forever so during the off-season, I started working in the commercial real estate industry. I have been in Commercial Real Estate since my Cowboy days when I started with Henry Miller, then with The Staubach Company and now with Jones Lang LaSalle.
I know the military and veterans continue to play a prominent role in your life. Can you tell us about the work you’re now doing to support veterans in Dallas-Fort Worth?
RS: I founded Allies in Service in 2011. We reach out to veterans of all eras to provide support in the areas of employment, housing, education and health care, focusing on employment. We can’t solve all the problems of each service member, but we are making a constant effort to make a difference in the life of veterans each and every day.
I am proud to be on the Military Advisory Board for JPMorgan Chase. Locally, Allies has partnered with the firm on several occasions including five veteran home giveaways and resume review and mock interview clinics for veterans hosted by JPMorgan. Our missions are closely aligned, which makes JPMorgan Chase the perfect partner.
I am also on the Foundation Board at the United States Naval Academy.
What role has Dallas-Fort Worth played in your career?
RS: Marianne and I still love Cincinnati and our friends from those days, but Dallas is home. Three of our kids were born while I was in the Navy, but they grew up in Dallas, as did our two youngest kids. Our five kids, 15 grandkids and two great-grandbabies all live in Dallas. I am proud to have been a Dallas Cowboy and have my real estate career here. Dallas has a great economic climate which contributed to the success of The Staubach Company.
What advice would you give to young men and women as they transition out of the military and into the private sector?
RS: Don’t be too proud to ask for help. You left your friends and family and nobly served your country. There is no shame in needing some assistance to feel at home again once you return. The community wants to help. We want to serve you as you have served us.
What are some of the qualities you see our veterans bring to communities and companies in Dallas-Fort Worth?
RS: I see the wonderful qualities a veteran brings to the workplace every day. At Allies in Service as well as JLL we have several veteran employees. They are at work every day, they do not complain, they work hard. They are team players, trustworthy and dedicated. Veterans have traits like character and leadership ingrained into their very being. They have a “mission accomplished” mindset and are accustomed to making big decisions. All of these ingredients make a veteran a great candidate for the private sector. Many Dallas-Fort Worth companies, like JPMorgan Chase, JLL, MedSynergies, and USAA, have veteran hiring initiatives.
Dallas loves its veterans.
Since 2011, JPMorgan Chase has helped to lead the Veteran Jobs Mission – an employer coalition committed to collectively hiring 1 million veterans. As of May 2016, the coalition had hired more than 330,000 veterans. Why do you think the coalition has been so successful? What do you think of the goal to hire 1 million veterans?
RS: The truth is that vets do good work. Employers want that talent. They want all of those characteristics I mentioned, and that’s what they get when they hire a veteran. The coalition has been successful because those companies are doing the right thing for deserving men and women. We are thankful and committed to our veterans. JPMorgan Chase is providing great and sincere leadership for the coalition. Also, veterans make it easy for a company to say “yes” to hiring them.
What is the call-to-action for employers in Texas?
RS: Keep it up. Keep hiring these quality men and women. If your company does not have a veteran hiring initiative, set one up. You may hire a veteran thinking you are doing him or her a favor, but in the end, the company will be the big winner.