LAURA OWEN is an adjunct assistant professor and teaches courses in social welfare policy, leadership and management. She is an expert on social work administration, leadership, management, development, fundraising and policy. She received her master’s degree in social work from the University of Denver and went on to serve as an officer with the U.S. Air Force.
She is a published, boarded researcher with the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System’s Center for Excellence for Stress and Mental Health and has several years of experience in both nonprofit and governmental leadership and management. She currently serves as San Diego regional director to a national, faith-based, nonprofit that focuses on social justice issues, particularly those related to immigration, poverty and children.
A former Peace Corps and AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer, Owen has extensive experience with international aid and development work. A decorated combat veteran, she was a first responder to the September 11th attacks at Ground Zero in New York and later deployed to support the U.S. air invasion of Afghanistan (Operation Enduring Freedom).
She is a passionate supporter of military and veterans’ causes and co-founded American Military Muscle, a San Diego-based nonprofit organization designed to provide vocational rehabilitation and mental health services to local combat veterans.
Her recent publication in Military Medicine, "Differential impact of combat on post-deployment symptoms in female and male veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan," examines the connection between military deployment and reported mental health symptoms of Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans presenting for care at the San Diego Veterans Health Administration.
University of Denver: M.S.W. 1998
Hiram College: B.A. 1993
Areas of Expertise (6)
Industry Expertise (6)
Articles & Publications (1)
We aimed to describe differences in combat experience for male and female veterans and characterize differential effects on postdeployment physical and mental health symptoms, including aggression.