Brigham veterans and service members gather for a photo following a recent luncheon.

Brigham veterans and service members gather for a photo following a recent luncheon.

Every day at the Brigham, Eric Goralnick, MD, MS, draws on what he learned while serving in the U.S. Navy.

“Quite often, I think about how we can translate those lessons around leadership, communication, operations management and care from our experiences in the military to the civilian setting,” said Goralnick, medical director of Emergency Preparedness and the Access Center. “That focus of looking out for your shipmate in the Navy translates to the same mission at the Brigham, which is that everything we do is for our patients.”

On June 25, members of the Brigham community who are serving or have served in the military came together for a Veterans Luncheon in the Thorn Building. The event — co-hosted by Goralnick, Tim Ewing, PhD, vice president for Employee Diversity, Inclusion and Experience, and David Johnson, project analyst in the Department of Medicine — provided a chance for colleagues to listen, share and help build the Brigham’s veteran community.

It meant a lot to oncology nurse Hilary Farlow, BSN, RN, to have the opportunity to get to know her fellow service members at the Brigham.

A retired medical service officer in the U.S. Army National Guard, Farlow looks forward to staying connected with these colleagues.

“I was glad to be here, and I hope to meet more military veterans at the Brigham in the future,” said Farlow, who works on Braunwald Tower 7. “I am interested to learn more about them and the opportunities they’ve had here at the hospital.”

Enriching the Organization

When asked about the link between military service and his work at the Brigham, David Correia, manager of Security Systems, Distributed Campus and Training in Police and Security, said both roles rely on high levels of discipline and morale.

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“Having been a soldier and a leader, both on active duty and the reserve component, instilling that spirit in the unit or in the organization helps to elevate discipline and keep people motivated,” Correia said.

During the event, attendees expressed interest in continuing to meet and discuss ways to come together more regularly.Ewing said he was grateful to learn more about faculty and staff who’ve served in the military because their unique skills and perspectives enrich the organization. He also encouraged all those who have served to self-identify via PeopleSoft so that the Brigham has a better understanding of its service member and veteran community.

“You’ve already received quality leadership training, and I look to you to help champion and lead some of the work we’re doing to become a better institution,” Ewing said. “Also, there’s the camaraderie that you all share having served in the military, which I think is another way of thinking about your contributions of knowing how to work in teams.”

If you are interested in learning more about veterans’ gatherings at the Brigham, email Eric Goralnick at egoralnick@bwh.harvard.edu.