Dog Tag Inc.

aka Dog Tag Bakery Inc.   |   Washington, DC   |  www.dogtaginc.org

Mission

Dog Tag Bakery, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that empowers veterans with service-connected disabilities, military spouses, and caregivers to re-discover purpose and find community post-service through an innovative business and entrepreneurship fellowship program.

Ruling year info

2012

Chief Executive Officer

Meghan Ogilvie

Main address

3206 Grace Street NW

Washington, DC 20007 USA

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EIN

45-2130904

NTEE code info

(Vocational Rehabilitation (includes Job Training and Employment for Disabled and Elderly)) (J30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

While the veteran unemployment rate is on the decline, most veterans will leave their first job post-service within one year, according to a 2016 CNAS study. The same report reveals that turnover among veterans decreases once veterans have found a position of interest that aligns with their past experience. Research indicates that while 26% of today’s veterans want to start businesses, only 6% do, citing access to capital and networking as the biggest barriers to entrepreneurship. Unemployment and underemployment pose significant challenges for military spouses and, in turn, military families. A cycle of frequent moves and deployments often makes obtaining and retaining meaningful, full-time employment difficult. The unemployment rate among military spouses consistently hovers at or over 20% - four times the national average - and 77% of spouses note that their status as a military spouse has negatively impacted their career.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Dog Tag Fellowship Program

With a holistic focus on developing the whole person and facilitating the military-to-civilian cultural shift rather than job placements, DTI’s fellowship reflects the needs of today’s transitioning veterans, military spouses, and caregivers. Our five-month program seeks to bridge the gap often left for transitioning veterans by TAP and other transition programs and provide a transition program for often overlooked military spouses and caregivers. Our comprehensive and multifaceted fellowship program enables DTI fellows to dip their toe back into education, gain first-hand experience in a living, breathing small business, explore a wide-variety of civilian career paths, and acquire key soft skills through Learning Labs. Wellness is a cornerstone of our program; from mindfulness to journaling, nutrition to yoga, we believe that our holistic, wellness-oriented approach allows the service-disabled veterans, military spouses, and caregivers we serve to be mentally ready to absorb the lessons and resources our program provides and lay the groundwork for their successful transition into civilian life.

Dog Tag Bakery acts as an incubator for DTI’s veteran education program, providing participants with the unique opportunity to apply classroom learnings about business in a real-life growing small business. Dog Tag provides experiential learning by facilitating a working rotation through the storefront and back-office non-profit positions. Fellows spend nine hours per week in rotation with nine members of DTI’s management team, enabling participants to gain first-hand experience in operations, staff management, product creation, customer service, finance, budgeting, business development, marketing, and more.

Population(s) Served
Veterans
People with disabilities

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of clients who report a greater sense of purpose and improved overall wellness

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Military personnel, Veterans

Related Program

Dog Tag Fellowship Program

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

91% of our alumni strongly agree that the program has made a positive impact on their professional lives; 89% strongly agree that the program has made a positive impact on their personal lives

Number of clients served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Military personnel, Veterans

Related Program

Dog Tag Fellowship Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

Our pilot cohort launched in 2014 with 10 Fellows, and we began running two cohorts per year in 2016. We will continue to run two (2) five-month fellowships of 15-16 Fellows per cohort each year.

Number of program graduates

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Military personnel, Veterans

Related Program

Dog Tag Fellowship Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We will continue to run our program twice a year with 15-16 Fellows per cohort for the near future and hope to exceed our 93% graduation rate.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

We seek to bridge the gap often left for transitioning veterans after attending the DoD’s mandatory Transition Assistance Program, as well as other transition programs, and provide a program for often overlooked military spouses and caregivers. With a holistic focus on developing the whole person and facilitating the military-to-civilian cultural shift rather than job placements, DTI’s program reflects the needs of today’s transitioning veterans, military spouses, and caregivers. Dog Tag Bakery acts as a living business school for our Fellows. Our high-touch, high impact approach allows us to provide individualized attention to our fellows over the course of their five-month fellowship, connecting them with the resources and tools needed to achieve their version of success. We believe transformational change happens when we create a learning space that is safe and supportive, yet also challenging for our fellows. We strive to foster transformational change in the well-being, growth, and development of our fellows every day. We empower our Fellows to have realistic insight into where they are today, where they’d like to be, and how to get there.

Loneliness and decreased feelings of connectedness not only make transitioning from the military more challenging, they’re also associated with depression, suicidality, and health issues. Those we serve are already vulnerable––from physical and/or mental health concerns and/or economic instability––so we are committed to continuing our program and helping our Fellows and alumni move forward during and after this crisis. Given COVID-19’s staggering economic impact, we foresee increased demand for our program as unemployment numbers continue to rise.

DTI’s Fellowship Program is a four-part, comprehensive education, entrepreneurship, and employment-readiness program that puts experiential learning at the center of its efforts. Our high-touch, high-impact approach allows us to provide individualized attention to our fellows over the course of their five-month fellowship, connecting them with the resources, tools, and network needed to achieve their version of success. Fellows have the time, space, and resources to identify their personal and professional goals, and build a roadmap of tangible next steps towards reaching them. Our program is comprised of 4 parts: Academic Foundation - Fellows earn a Certificate in Business Administration from Georgetown University’s SCS; experiential learning through hands-on work throughout various organizational functions, providing context for the academic coursework provided by our partner Georgetown University; learning labs – a series of workshops and lectures that facilitate career exploration and development of hard and soft skills; and wellness - from mindfulness to journaling, nutrition to yoga, our wellness-oriented approach allows the service-disabled veterans, military spouses, and caregivers to be mentally ready to absorb the lessons and resources our program provides and lay the foundation for their successful transitions into civilian life.

Our Fellowship Program is a four-part comprehensive curriculum that puts experiential learning at the center of its efforts.

Curriculum, Part I: Certificate in Business Administration
DTI partners with Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies to award Fellows with a Certificate in Business Administration. This program has been tailored specifically to fit the Fellows’ learning needs. Customizations include substitution of the standard finance course with a custom Financial Management course, and the addition of an Entrepreneurship course. Upon successful completion of the full curriculum, Fellows earn a certificate with the full rights and privileges of all Georgetown University certificate recipients. The full list of courses in the certificate program are: Principles of Management; Principles of Marketing, Business Accounting, Communications in Organizations, Financial Management, Entrepreneurship, and Business Policy.

Curriculum, Part II: Rotation through the Business Functions at Dog Tag Bakery
Dog Tag Bakery, a successful business entity, exists as a living business school for the Fellows to engage in the hands-on tasks, strategic thinking, and reality of running an actual small business. The bakery serves as a model that can be applied in any business environment. The cohort is broken into small groups of 3-4 Fellows each. Teams spends five weeks in each of the four business functions. Each rotation consists of 12, three-hour sessions in the following business functions: Operations, Management & Human Resources, Finance & Strategy, Fundraising, Marketing & Public Relations, and Product Development and Delivery.

Curriculum, Part III and IV: Learning Labs and Wellness
Learning Labs provide Fellows with the experience and confidence to help guide them on their path towards success. Fellows meet a number of business contacts and professionals to help broaden their network, expose them to various paths of career success, and challenge them to think differently about their own career paths and aspirations. Through workshops, guest speakers, and crafted experiences, Fellows refine the soft skills that allow them to be effective in the civilian workplace––this means recognizing that experiences and relationships are central to their success. Adults learn best when they apply the lessons of their past to new experiences; much of the transformative power of this program comes from the reflective activities that build meaning. Fellows are tasked with keeping a journal of their experience and sharing lessons learned in monthly reflection papers. Additionally, regular group conversation and interactions through a reflective process gives voice to what Fellows are feeling and creates deeper levels of meaning. Finally, we introduce resources and practices around self-care, such as yoga and counseling services, bringing the practice of well-being into service for their overall health and career wellness.

DTI has enrolled 163 Fellows across our first thirteen (13) cohorts. To date, we’ve achieved a 93% graduation rate. Of graduates:
-51% are employed in the private, public, or nonprofit sector
-38% are entrepreneurs who own and operate their own businesses or nonprofits
-22% are enrolled in postsecondary educational programs
-20% are focusing on their health and recovery
-10% are currently seeking employment and working closely with DTI staff
(Note: Total exceeds 100%, as some alumni fall into more than one of these categories.)

We plan to run two fellowships of 15-16 Fellows a year for the near future. As of our 9th Cohort's graduation in 2019, we have served over 100 service-disabled veterans, military spouses, and caregivers––and that number is only growing. The power of our program does not end with the personal and professional development which Fellows experience; we have begun to observe and track a “ripple effect” as our alumni positively impact their communities–-create jobs, mentor others, and champion the needs of the veteran, caregiver, and military spouse communities.

Surveys of our alumni show that:
91% of alumni strongly agree that the program has made a positive impact on their professional lives;
89% strongly agree that the program has made a positive impact on their personal lives;
80% felt that their personal skills (self-care, work/life balance, self-reflection) have been positively impacted by Dog Tag Fellowship;
79% felt that their communication skills (presentations, writing, finding your voice) have been positively impacted by Dog Tag Fellowship;
73% felt that their professional skills (networking, problem-solving, leadership, conflict resolution) have been positively impacted by Dog Tag Fellowship

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

Dog Tag Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Dog Tag Inc.

Board of directors
as of 2/26/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Peter Grossman

Ogden Capital LLC

Term: 2018 -

Brian Roemer

ABT Associates

Jack Barry

Cavan Advisors

Tony Cianci

Manhattan Associates

Jay Farrar

Bechtel

Vivian Greentree

FirstData

Mark Handwerger

The Bedrock Companies

David Huntoon

D2H Leadership Consulting

Gail Lione

DENTONS

Tom Richey

Raytheon

Lauren Barnes

The Boeing Company

Rick Fondriest

Deloitte Consulting LLP

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 01/28/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/28/2021

Policies and practices developed in partnership with Equity in the Center, a project that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems within the social sector to increase racial equity. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.