Brigadier General (Retired) Michael P. Fleming- US Army-St. Augustine, FL
Education and Training Accomplishments:
Mike holds a Bachelor of Science degree (with Honors) from Jacksonville State University, a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of North Florida, and a Master of Arts (with Distinction) in National Security and Strategic Studies from the United States Naval War College.
He has also served as a Congressional Fellow, National Security Fellow at Harvard University, and Foreign Affairs Fellow at Johns Hopkins University.
Professional and Employment History:
General Fleming is a distinguished Northeast Florida military veteran leader who has served in significant leadership positions in the military, business, and education sectors. He transcended his unique leadership into serving Florida Veterans.
Professional and Employment History Continued:
Mike currently serves as the Outreach Manager for the Cohen Veterans Network after previously serving as the Outreach Director for the Stephen A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Centerstone in Jacksonville.
He served as the Senior Vice President of University Relations and Development for Jacksonville University with responsibility for developing and maintaining effective relations with key government, military and community leaders to enhance achievement of the University’s strategic goals. Prior to that, Mike was a Managing Director for Deutsche Bank, serving as the Site Lead in Jacksonville while also serving as the Co-Chair of Veterans on Wall Street, an initiative dedicated to honoring and employing veterans.
Before joining Deutsche Bank, Mike was a career military officer with over 30 years of service including nine years of service in the U.S. Marine Corps and 27 years in the Army National Guard; where he served as Assistant Adjutant General of the Florida Army National Guard, with the rank of Brigadier General. He has also held positions at American National Bank of Florida and General Electric Credit Corporation.
Mike was a member of the United States (CIOR) Military Pentathlon Team for eight years and represented the United States in international competitions.
Specific military assignments include:
- Assistant Adjutant General; Florida Army National Guard; 2003-
- Chief of Staff; Florida Army National Guard; 2001-
- Director of Operations (Deputy Chief of Staff Operations); Florida Army National Guard; 1998-2001.
- Chief, Legislative Liaison; National Guard Bureau, Pentagon; 1997-
- National Security Fellow; Harvard University; 1996-
- Battalion Commander; 927th Corps Support Battalion; 1994-
- Congressional Fellow; House Veterans Affairs Committee; 1993-
- Foreign Affairs Fellow, Johns Hopkins University;
- Inspector General Investigator; Pentagon; 1991-
- Student; Naval War College; 1990-
- Assistant Professor of Military Science; University of Florida; 1987-
- Physical Security Officer; 50th Area Support Group; 1986-
- Company Commander; 50th Area Support Group; 1984-
- Physical Security Officer; 50th Area Support Group; 1983-
- United States Marine Corps
- Special Services Officer; 1st Force Service Support Group; 1978-
- Executive Officer; Engineer Support Company; 7th Engineer Support Battalion;
- Platoon Commander; Engineer Support Company; 7m Engineer Support Battalion; 1977.
- Student, The Basic School;
- Officer Candidate, Officer Candidate School;
- Administrative Chief; 1975-1976; Camp Elmore,
- Unit Diary Clerk; 1974-1975; Camp Geiger, North
- Basic Personnel Administrative/Unit Diary School; 1974; Parris Island, South
- Recruit; 1974; Parris Island, South
Advocacy on Behalf of Veterans:
- Founding Member and Chair of the Northeast Florida Fire Watch Council, Northeast Florida’s Fight to End Veteran Suicide (www.thefirewatch.org). This innovative program has singularly decreased the number of Florida Veteran Suicides and serves as a driving force m the Governor’s Veteran Suicide Prevention Challenge. Has been adopted in Florida as an invaluable tool to County Veteran Service Officers as well as over 3,900 community veteran advocates to understand and provide resources to Veterans in crisis.
- Founding member of Veterans on Wall Street, a comprehensive Military Veterans Outreach Program plan that finance and insurance companies now use to enhance their outreach for veteran recruiting and veteran https://veteransonwallstreet .corn/
- Founder and Chair of Jacksonville Military Veterans Coalition, a Public/Private Partnership with the City of Jacksonville and business community to provide employment opportunities for veterans (http://coj.net/departments/military-affairs,-veterans-and-disabled services/jobs-for-vets-(1) mvc.aspx).
- Founder and Chair of Northeast Florida Military Veteran College Network, a one-stop shop for information on universities, colleges, and graduate programs in and around https://earnup.org/veterans/
- Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce Military Issues
- Board Member of the Greater Jacksonville Area USO.
Civic Activities and Contributions:
- Founding member of Veterans on Wall Street
- Founder and Chair of Jacksonville Military Veterans Coalition
- Found er and Chair of Northeast Florida Military Veteran College Network
- Founding Member and Chair of the Northeast Florida Fire Watch Council
- Board Chair of Hands-On Jacksonville
- Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce Military Issues Committee
- Board Member of the Greater Jacksonville Area USO
Awards and Honors:
- Legion of Merit, awarded in 2010 by Major Emmett “Buddy” Titshaw Jr., Adjutant General of Florid a, for his “leadership and professionalism that had a positive impact on the thousands of Soldiers and personnel of the Florid a Anny National Guard.”
- Florida Cross, awarded in 20 IO by Major Gen. Titshaw , Adjutant General of Florida, for his for his “devotion to duty to the countless Soldiers and Airmen of the Florida National Guard.”
- State of Florida Governor’s Business Ambassador Award, presented by former Gov. Rick Scott
- Bronze Medallion for Humanitarian Service (Four Chaplains Memorial Foundation)
- Jacksonville Business Journal Veteran of lnfluence
- Cohen Veterans Network Admiral Mullen Leadership Award
- Joint Service Achievement Medal
- National Defense Medal w/second award
- Air Assault Badge
- German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge
- France Bronze Brevet Sportif
- Netherlands Militaire Lichamelijke Vaardigheid Award
- Department of the Anny Staff Badge
- Florida National Guard Distinguished Service Award
- Operation New Uniform Salute to Service Award
- Member, United States (CIOR) Military Pentathlon Team, 1990-1994; 1997; 2000; 2007.
- Several other medals and ribbons for service-related
- Created the Jacksonville Business Journal Innovators in Education
Brigadier General (ret) Michael Fleming epitomizes the best of service to country, state, and community. A native of Jacksonville, Florida, he has been serving our country and community for over 40 years. General Fleming’s military service was characterized by excellence. In the Marine Corps, he joined as an enlisted Marine and, after three meritorious promotions and achieving the rank of Sergeant in 19 months of service, attended Officer Candidate School through the Enlisted Commissioning Program. General Fleming then served in numerous leadership roles rising to the rank of Captain before transferring to the Florida Army National Guard.
Upon entering the Florida Anny National Guard, General Fleming served in various command and staff positions. Highlights of his service include two toms at the Pentagon, selection as the first National Guard Congressional Fellow; Battalion Command er; National Guard Bureau Chief of Legislative Liaison, Harvard University
National Security Fellow; Johns Hopkins University Foreign Affairs Fellow; and Chief of Staff of the Florida Anny National Guard.
General Fleming’s service culminated in his selection as the Assistant Adjutant General of the Florida Army National Guard. In this important position he served as the senior executive responsible for Florida Anny National Guard programs and 10,000+ Soldiers and supervised operations, training, equipment readiness and resource allocations. General Fleming served as the Florida National Guard’s Joint Task Force Commander for six Hurricane operations and worked extensively with the Department of Defense and Department of the Army.
He gave back to his community through multiple non-profits to include serving as an advisor to the Community Foundation of Northeast Florida, Gulf Coast Community Foundation in Venice, Florida, and the Dade Community Foundation in the applying for and receiving of $5 million each from the Iraq Afghanistan Deployment Impact Fund. Throughout his career General Fleming has been a thought leader and has had articles published by Harvard University, Journal of Homeland Security, and NATO Review.
General Fleming was a member of the United States Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers Military Competition (CIOR MILCOMP) team which competes in a three-day Military Pentathlon competition consisting of NA1D and Partnership for Peace nations which has been held since 1957. CIOR Military Competition is a team competition composed of three person teams in which each of the team members must complete the competition events together. The three-day competition consists of pistol and rifle shooting of the host country on the first day, land obstacle course and utility swimming on the second day, and orienteering with additional tasks like range estimation, map reading and hand grenade throwing on the third day. Competition to make the United States team was intense with 60+ male competitors competing for 21 team positions. General Fleming was a member of eight United States teams, with his three-man team achieving two top 5 finishes, two top 14 finishes, and another top 21 finish in competitions that had 50+ international teams competing.
Since his retirement from the military in 2010, General Fleming has worked as a Managing Director for Deutsche Bank leading the unprecedented growth of the Bank in Jacksonville, Senior Vice President at Jacksonville University with responsibility for University Relations and Development, Outreach Director for the Steve A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Centerstone in Jacksonville and now Outreach Manager for the Cohen Veterans Network. He worked with the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce extensively while at Jacksonville University to enhance the economic opportunities in the Arlington area and played a major role in the development of a Community Redevelopment Area (https://www.coj.net/departments/office-of economic-development/community-redevelopment-agency-(cra)/renew-arlington-cra) General Fleming was presented the State of Florida Governor’s Business Award by Governor Scott in recognition for business expertise.
Most importantly, General Fleming is a tireless advocate for veterans and their families. He is a founding member of Veterans on Wall Street program (www.vetemnsonwallstreet.com); Founder and Chair of the Jacksonville Military Veterans Coalition (www.coj.net/jobsforvets) that connects Military Veterans with employment opportunities; and Founder and Chair of the Northeast Florida Military Veteran College Network (www.eamup.org/veteran-service-resources) that connects Military Veterans with education opportunities. General Fleming is a nationally recognized expert in Military Veterans Outreach Programs. He developed a comprehensive Military Veterans Outreach Program plan that Liberty Mutual, Farmers Insurance, HCL, and other companies utilized to enhance their outreach program. General Fleming started serving on the USO Board while still in the military and helped expand the Greater Jacksonville USO’s focus to include the Guard and Reserve. He has been involved with all major Jacksonville USO decisions for the last 15 years.
General Fleming was instrumental in the Cohen Veterans Network placing a Military Family Clinic in Jacksonville. He was the first Northeast Florida veteran leader contacted by Cohen Veterans Network and over a year period hosted numerous Network leader visits to Jacksonville. General Fleming made the key active duty, veteran, and business connections that convinced Network leaders that Jacksonville would support a Cohen Clinic, which opened in March 2020. The Cohen Veterans Network leadership was so impressed by his passion and commitment that he was hired as the Jacksonville Clinic’s first Outreach Director then was subsequently promoted to Outreach Manager for the entire Network.
Since joining the Cohen Veterans Network/Centerstone team General Fleming has worked tirelessly to establish a significant Network community presence. He helped to create the Centerstone Veterans Military and Military Families Employee Resource Group and served as its first Chair. General Fleming created and led implementation of a Military Cultural Awareness Program for Centerstone that is also being utilized by other Cohen Veterans Network partners. He leveraged his military experience to significantly enhance the Network’s relationship with the National Guard/Reserve. General Fleming served as the Vice Chair of the Network’s Outreach Collaborative to support Outreach across all clinics. After being promoted to Network Outreach Manager, he led the development of a Network Outreach Strategic Plan that included a Vision Statement, Mission Statement, Outreach Collaborative, Outreach Council, Outreach Peer Mentor Program, Outreach Training Committee, Outreach Leadership Academy, Outreach Stakeholder Map, and Outreach Resource Library.
Finally, in 2019, General Fleming and other Northeast Florida veteran advocates created the Northeast Florida Fire Watch Council (www.thefirewatch.org), an effort to end veteran suicide. The Fire Watch, as it is known, is a community-based organization founded under three premises – (1) that suicide is preventable, (2) that we must connect Veterans to resources they need before they slip into crisis, and (3) that the broader community can play a vital role in the effort. The Fire Watch has now expanded statewide. Its long-term objective is to reduce Veteran suicides in Florida by 25% over 3 years when compared against baseline 2019 data.
The Fire Watch’s long-term objective is to reduce Veteran suicides in targeted geographic areas by 25% over three years against baseline 2019 data by providing veterans with easier access to upstream resources and services, including transition support, financial assistance, and mental health services. The Watch Stander program was launched in May 2020, and is an upstream, early intervention network of community volunteers trained to identify risk factors of Veterans at risk of suicide and to direct those Veterans to the resources they need. As of today, over 3,900 Watch Standers have been trained and are standing watch for Veterans. The large majority are in Northeast Florida; however, all County Veteran Service Officers are being trained with this valuable tool as they serve on the front line of all Florida Veterans.
In 2020, with the first year of the Watch Stander network in place, Northeast Florida recorded 45 veteran suicides, a 42.3% reduction from the 2019 baseline figure of 78. In 2021, there were 36 veteran suicides in Northeast Florida. This is a 53.8% reduction from the 2019 baseline. This cannot be emphasized enough!! Florida is leading the fight to end veteran suicide, and all of this is happening under the vision and execution by Mike Fleming. This Veteran, General Mike Fleming, representing compassion and service to Veterans, IS THE LEADING FORCE in reducing Veteran Suicides in Florida. His mastery of getting things done, and critical thinking made this real for so many Veterans who are in crisis.
While he is proud of his leadership roles in the veterans’ ecosystem, General Fleming considers his assistance to individual veterans and their families his greatest legacy. He has connected countless veterans to services and opportunities while never seeking to spotlight his assistance. General Fleming is unquestionably the “go to” veteran leader in Northeast Florida who credits others for goals reached.
General Fleming is clearly among the top leaders in Florida’s veteran community. There is without hesitation, my belief, that Mike Fleming is making so many new dreams come true for those who have endured the nightmares of despair. In other words, he is saving Vet.erans lives every day.
I respectfully solicit your vote for General Mike Fleming, the best of the best, for induction into the Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame, Class of 2023. He is your number one choice to represent the kind of work that we expect from those inducted into the Hall of Fame.