The 2017 Executive Board Officers
Lt Col John F. Simonetti, USAF (Ret) Lieutenant Colonel John F. Simonetti was born Oct 12, 1957 in Derby, Connecticut. After graduating High School at Fairfield Prep in 1975 he attended Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY graduating in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science Degree (Cum Laude) in Physics. In 1981 he earned his commission at the Air Force Officer Training School at Lackland Air Force Base, TX. He is a graduate of Squadron Officer’s School (1985), Air Command and Staff College (1995), and holds a Master of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (1997).
Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti earned his pilot wings in 1981at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas as a Distinguished Graduate and winner of the Academic Award from Undergraduate Pilot Training. From there he was assigned to the 25th Flying Training Squadron at Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma as an instructor pilot in the T-38. In March 1986 he attended F-16 Basic Training at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona and graduated in October, 1986. His first F-16 assignment was to the 496th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Hahn Airbase, Germany. There he also served as squadron Standardization and Evaluation Liaison Officer and Assistant Chief of Wing Training for the 51 Tactical Fighter Wing. In 1989, Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti was assigned as Air Liaison Officer to the 8th Infantry Division of the US Army in Bad Kreuznach, Germany. In October, 1990 he volunteered to serve in Operation Desert Shield and was reassigned to the 12th Aviation Brigade already in place at King Fahd Airport, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. During Operation Desert Storm, Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti’s unit participated in history’s largest air assault operation in conjunction with the 101st Airborne Division’s movement into Iraq.
Immediately after the war, Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti was selected as initial cadre member of the 18th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. After requalification and Block 40 F-16 training at MacDill and Luke Air Force Bases, he arrived in Alaska in December, 1991. There he served as F-16 instructor pilot, flight commander, and Chief of Wing Stan Eval. Reassigned to 17th Air Force Headquarters, Sembach Airbase, Germany in February 1995 as Chief of Safety, Lt Col Simonetti witnessed the closure of that command and was asked to serve as F-16 evaluator on the United States Air Force, Europe Standardization and Evaluation Team. He rose to become Chief of that office in 1997 and in July 1998 was reassigned to Luke as an instructor pilot and assistant operations officer in the 309th Fighter Squadron. Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti completed his tour at Luke as the assistant operations officer in the 56th Operational Support Squadron and instructor pilot in the 310th Fighter Squadron.
A command pilot with over 3300 Flying hours, Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti has over 2000 hours in F-16. His military decorations include the Air Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Air Force Commendation medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Air Force Achievement Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Combat Readiness Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, National Defense Service Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal, Armed Forced Expeditionary Medal, and the Kuwait Liberation Medal.
Lieutenant Colonel Simonetti is married to the former Louise B. Anziano from Trumbull, Connecticut. They have twin sons John and Joseph, 30, who are married and live in the DC area.
CAPT Mary A. Durand, Nurse Corps, USN (Ret) started her Navy life as the daughter of a 30-year career Naval aviator; born in Annapolis, Maryland, she traveled widely with her family. She is proud of her father’s career which started as E-1 and retired as O-6. She is equally proud of her brother who served as a SEABEE in Vietnam and her nephew who is presently serving as a Navy JAG Commander.
Captain Mary Durand started her own Navy career as a Selected Reservist, serving seven years before being recalled to active duty. Her 13 years of civilian nursing experience included trauma, burn, operating room, critical care and dialysis nursing. She completed her Masters Degree in Adult Health Nursing and licensure as an Adult Nurse Practitioner prior to starting active duty in 1988. While on active duty she served in various medical-surgical positions at Pensacola, as the community health nurse on a developmental team in Okinawa, and then in the Tidewater, (first completing a dual Master’s Degree in Nursing through DUINS as a Family Nurse Practitioner and Community Health Nurse; then as the Senior Nurse at Oceana Branch clinic). Assigned as one of the first Family Nurse Practitioners ADDU to SURFLANT from the Naval Medical Center, Captain Durand enthusiastically brought primary care and health promotion services to the deck plates; serving on over 40 different “small boy” ships with a total of 186 days underway. She deployed for 178 days as the senior officer to the Camp Doha clinic in Kuwait and served with Army medical providers. Captain Durand rounded out her 27-year career with a tour at NATTTC clinic in Pensacola, Florida providing primary care and health promotions services to a large joint service training community.
Captain Durand’s personal awards include the Navy Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation medal with two gold stars, Navy Achievement medal with one gold star, and the Military outstanding volunteer medal. Other awards include: Meritorious Unit Commendation with two stars, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary and Service Medals, and the National Defense Ribbon.
Captain Durand has one daughter, Alison, who works for Principal Financial Group, married with two children and one son, Alan, who is a professional rock and ice climbing guide for Alpine Endeavors. The Durand family also includes a bichon frise puppy. Captain Durand’s retirement activities include working as an APRN for Norwalk Medical Group and teaching at Western Connecticut State University. She is an active member of the Navy League, Western Connecticut Military Officers Association, and the Notre Dame Guild.
CAPT William O. Glass Jr., USN (Ret). B.S. Journalism Northwestern University (Naval ROTC) 1976, M.S. in advertising Northwestern 1981. Commanded midshipman battalion in senior year; US Navy 1976-1981, aboard USS Caron DD-970, as an engineering dept. officer and surface warfare officer; stationed in Norfolk, VA; made deployments to the Mediterranean, Black Sea, Caribbean, North Sea, United Kingdom and Eastern Pacific. Transitioned to Naval Reserve in 1981, in which he served until retiring in 2003. During his service, Captain Glass commanded five Naval Reserve Units, and was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal (Gold Star in lieu of second award), the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, the National Defense Medal, and numerous service ribbons and unit awards. He is currently the Senior Naval Science instructor at Bridgeport Military Academy (BMA), a new high school focusing on first responders and military sciences.
Prior to joining BMA, Captain Glass was, for over 20 years, vice president and general manager of Connecticut Marketing Associates, a marketing and management consulting firm in Wilton, Conn., where he was responsible for new business development, client service and project management.
Captain Glass is a past president and current vice president of the Western Connecticut Chapter of the Military Officers Association. He is also a member, past president and Paul Harris Fellow of the Wilton Rotary Club. In addition, he serves as Sergeant at Arms and Junior Vice Commander of American Legion Post 86, Wilton, Conn.
He resides in Wilton with his wife Susan, a registered nurse. They have two children, daughter Ginny, a teacher in Columbia, MD, and son Eric, a student at Gettysburg College.
VP Youth Leadership
LT Susan Stuban Monks USNR. B.S. United States Merchant Marine Academy 1982. U.S. Coast Guard Third Mate of Steam and Motor Vessels, Unlimited Tonnage. J.D. Quinnipiac University School of Law 1990. Admitted to the Connecticut Bar, U.S. District Court, U.S. Court of Military Appeals. Atlantic Richfield Oil Company, served as 3rd Officer of oil super tankers in the Alaskan crude oil trade, 1982-84. Communication Electronics Command (CECOM), Fort Monmouth, NJ, Engineer for electronic warfare equipment installed on the AH-64 Apache and AH-1 Cobra helicopters. Maintenance Engineer for the ASN 128 Doppler Navigation System and the ALQ-136 Countermeasure Set, 1984-86. Transitioned from Individual Ready Reservist to active service as the Operations Officer and Navigator for the flagship MV CPL Louis J. Hauge Jr.’s maiden voyage executing the U.S. Navy’s Maritime Prepositioning Ships Squadron II mission in Diego Garcia, British Indian Ocean Terminal, 1985. Reserve Officer attached to the Naval Control of Shipping (NCSO) Unit 601, New Haven, CT, 1987-1992. Attorney General Office, Pago Pago, American Samoa, Legal Intern, 1988. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Regional Counsel, Superfund Enforcement Attorney, 1990-1994. Adjunct Professor of Law, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, Naugatuck Valley Community College, and Western Connecticut State University, 1994-present. Magistrate, Connecticut Superior Court, 2011-present.
Susan resides in Trumbull with her husband Tom. They have five children.
LT Donald Boyle, USAR (Ret), B.S.Biology,Norwich University 1968, MS Biology, Hofstra University. Vietnam Veteran, Purple Heart Recipient, 1/77 Armor, 5th Mechanized Infantry Brigade. Morgan Stanley securities broker. Bank of America, loan consultant. Now retired.
Sam was drafted into the Army and was selected to attend OCS. Upon graduation, he was commissioned into the Army Special Forces (Green Berets). As Captain, he volunteered to go to Vietnam. His first assignment was the Commanding Officer of Dong Xoia, a Special Forces camp, Northwest of Saigon in the area of the “iron triangle”, running long range battalion size operations and interdiction of the Ho Chi Minh Trail.
His second assignment was Operations Officer of the III Corp Mobile Strike Force with the mission of locating, fixing and engaging the North Vietnamese entering the northwest area towards the Cambodian border.
Upon finishing his tour in Vietnam, CPT Sigler went to Wall Street where he spent many years until he opened a network of Lucent/Avaya telecom dealerships. Upon retirement from telecom he became a board member of the New York College of Podiatric Medicine as the college treasurer. He was elected
to Executive Vice President of the College.
CPT Sigler received the following commendations: Honorary Doctorate – New York College of Podiatric Medicine, Airborne, Combat Infantry Badge, Army Commendation for Valor and The Silver Star.
He resides in Stamford with his wife, Linda. Their son Daniel resides with his wife Karla in New York City.
COL Serge Gabriel, USAR (Ret) 1948 French Baccalaureat; 1949 French Armor OCS, Saumur, France; 1950 Tank Destroyer Platoon leader, Mainz, Germany; 1953 U.S. Infantry OCS, Ft. Benning, Georgia; 1954 Staff Officer, Eight Army Ordnance Depot, ASCOM City, Korea; 1955 Joined Army Reserve for 26 years service; 1957 Began 31 years with IBM World Trade Corp. (Market and Operation Planning manager: 5 years in Tokyo (monthly RTU attendance), for Japan, Korea and South East Asia; 3 years in Paris for Europe and Saudi Arabia (monthly NAVEUR attendance at Embassy, yearly active duty training in Germany); 1960 B.S. New York University; 1990 Master of Art in Religion (M.A.R.), Yale Divinity School, delivery of Bible seminars in Canada, France and West Africa; 1998 to date: participation in the development of the 1781 Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route (W3R) from Newport RI to Yorktown VA.
MAJ. Philip J. Cruz USA (Ret) B.S Secondary Education Western Connecticut State University 1976, M.A.T. Sacred Heart University 1996, Educational Administration Certification Sacred Heart University 2005, Graduate, United States Army Command and General Staff College 1992, Fort Leavenworth Kansas.
MAJ Cruz joined the United States Army Reserve as an enlisted man in 1971 and served within the enlisted ranks from E1Supply Clerk to E7 Chief Senior Supply Sergeant. He was selected as one of a very few enlisted soldiers to receive a direct commission as an Quartermaster Officer in the United States Army Reserve by the Secretary of the Army in March 1980. MAJ Cruz has served as Logistics, Transportation, Training, and Civil Affair officers within the duration of his 25-year tour with The 76th Training Division and Special Operations Command (USSOC). His last Billet was as HHC Detachment Commander 411th Civil Affairs Battalion.
MAJ Cruz works as a teacher for the Newtown Board of Education. He is an 8th grade Social Studies and Language Arts teacher for the Newtown Middle School. He has taught in the Newtown District for the past 23 years. Prior to his teaching career MAJ Cruz was a Sales Engineering Manager for three nationally prominent Semiconductor companies Intel, National Semiconductor, and Fairchild Semiconductor Corporations serving the electronic and information processing fields.
He resides in Newtown with his wife Sandra. They have two children daughter Amanda, residing In the D.C.area, and a son Andrew, who passed away in 2008.
VP Veterans & Public Affairs
LT Al Smith, USA Al Smith graduated from the University of Connecticut in 1965 with a BA in Economics. He was drafted into the Army in Nov ’65, taking Basic Training at Ft Dix, Advanced Infantry Training at Ft Jackson and Officer Candidate School at Ft Benning.
As a 2nd Lieutenant his first assignment was as a Basic Training Officer at Ft Campbell. In April ’67 he received his orders for Vietnam, assigned to the 1st Infantry Division as an Infantry Platoon Leader. He later served as a Mortar Platoon Leader and was the company’s Executive Officer during the TET offensive.
Upon returning from his tour in Vietnam he was assigned as the Officer Candidate School Recruiting Officer visiting colleges / universities in the Boston area.
Al left the military in Nov 1968 to start a career in the private sector. He worked for Shell Oil, Avon Products (including a three year assignment in Tokyo, Japan) and CEL Communications. He retired after 17 years with Lee Hecht Harrison.
Al spends much of his retirement time supporting several causes and organizations he feels strongly about: (1) Assisting Veterans – as a member of a Veterans Advisory Panel in CT District #5, conducting job search sessions at veteran events and as a VITAS volunteer visiting veterans in hospice; (2) Volunteering as a Citizen Leader for No Labels, a national grassroots movement focused on bringing our congressional leaders together to start solving the country’s problems through bipartisan governance; (3) Conducting a job search class for TBICO, a not-for-profit assisting women trying to find employment; And, (4) Chairing the succession planning committee for the SHRM HR Association of NY.
Al and his wife Maribeth live in Brookfield, CT. They have a son and three grand-daughters.