Valerie Halaby is the current president of Friends of Fisher House, Inc. a community group operating under the umbrella of the Fisher House Foundation in support of the West Palm Beach and Miami Fisher Houses. She is the past president and founder of SOS Support Our Soldiers, Inc., a Veterans’ support organization. SOS was established to follow the examples of the annual Jerry Lewis telethon for Muscular Dystrophy and Bob Hope’s USO tour to entertain U.S. military troops by producing the very first 24 hour online “$11 on 11-11” fundraising event via Livestream (an online streaming platform) on Veterans Day, 2009. Her passion for helping U.S. Military Veterans and their families was born of the gratitude she felt for their devoted service after our nation’s most terrible tragedy on September 11th, 2001. Her awareness of Veterans special needs became evident after receiving a special invitation by good friend Elaine Rogers, President of the USO Metro, to visit Washington D.C. for a V.I.P. tour of our nation’s Pentagon immediately following the 911 attack. During this visit Valerie spent time with patients at Walter Reed Medical Center; attended the Laying of the Wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery and had the privilege of sharing a private Pentagon visit with Army Vice Chief of Staff, General Keane (Ret.) and made many subsequent visits to participate with the USO in the years to follow.
While sharing conversations with wounded warriors at Walter Reed Medical Center and hearing the deeply moving stories of theses brave men and women, she became astonished to learn of the many unfulfilled needs and gaps in services that existed. Despite the government programs that are in place, soldiers having their hospital meals deducted from military paychecks was something impossible to believe. With this new awareness of the difficult challenges our military service members and their families faced, she realized a greater calling and became determined to seek ways to support these warrior families.
Valerie majored in Professional Aeronautics and Aviation Business Administration at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and earned a Master’s certification in Enterprise Configuration Management from the University of Houston. She currently enjoys a successful career in Engineering Configuration Management at Aerojet Rocketdyne, a Space and Missile Defense corporation that serves our troops stationed around the globe.
Valerie also enjoyed a successful career in the Real Estate industry and gained a vast array of experience from sales to construction to mortgage origination & securitization, and owned and operated A.B. Merrill, Inc. in for 16 years as a mortgage investment and trading company.
Valerie has also served on the The Palm Beach County Veterans Committee, Stand Down House/Love, Hope, Faith, Charity, Inc. and continues to maintain her strong ties to the USO, Washington, D.C.