PLATINUM2023

Combined Arms

United After the Uniform

Houston, TX   |  www.combinedarms.us

Mission

Deliver Innovative Technology Solutions that optimize connection to resources and drive network-wide efficiencies, ultimately improving the quality of life for veterans and military families.

Ruling year info

2016

CEO

Mr. Mike Hutchings

Main address

2929 McKinney

Houston, TX 77003 USA

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EIN

47-5648923

NTEE code info

Military/Veterans' Organizations (W30)

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

Veterans and their families lack awareness of resources when they move to a new community. Veterans and their families have a complex set of needs that require holistic resources. Veteran serving organizations lack the ability to provide holistic care to veterans. Veteran serving organizations are fragmented and do not coordinate. There is no access to a holistic data set shared by organizations.

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?

Combined Arms Technology System

Streamlines the connection between veterans, military families, caregivers and the military-connected community to vetted resources in the communities where they live to the organizations that serve them.

Combined Arms technology is live in all 50 states.

The Combined Arms network consists of over 250+ member organizations that provide more than 1100+ social services 41 of which have national reach.

Population(s) Served
Veterans
Families

The CAX Transition Center, a centrally located co-working space that is available to more than 250 government and nonprofit agencies. This space facilitates intentional “collaborative collisions” for professionals serving military and veteran families. The Transition Center is also a single point of entry from transitioning service members, veterans, and their families.

Population(s) Served
Families
Veterans

Combined Arms was selected by the state of Texas to build a network that would make Texas the first interconnected state for veterans and their families. Launched in April 2020, Combined Arms has grown the Texas Veterans Network (TVN) to include more than 250 best-in-class, vetted veteran-serving organizations and state agencies that collectively offer more than 1,100 resources for transitioning service members, veterans, and their families. Phase 1 of the TVN was completed in March 2023 with over 40,000 served.

Combined Arms was selected as the sole provider for Phase 2 of the TVN, covering all of Texas' 254 counties, which launched in April 2023. We anticipate serving an additional 34,600 unique veterans between May 2023 and April 2025, bringing the cumulative number of unique veterans served through TVN to 70,600 (4.65% of Texas’ veteran population) in just five years.

Population(s) Served

Through coordinating and conducting research with reputable academic partners to guide vision and strategy, validating shared measurement practices, and elevating the profile of our member organizations—Combined Arms Institute effectively packages the research and influence gained from expanding to new geographic markets.

Population(s) Served

Founded in 2019 and volunteer-led until late 2021, Combined Arms' SIVs & Allies Program engages veterans, SIV recipients, and other volunteers to work closely with local resettlement agencies to fill resource gaps and provide resource navigation support for recently arrived SIV holders and other wartime allies.

Combined Arms' longstanding work in support of Houston's Special Immigrant Visa holders (SIVs) and Allies population uniquely positioned us to formalize and scale our efforts to assist with the resettlement of thousands of Afghans arriving in Houston and across the state of Texas following the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan in August 2021. In late 2021, we brought on Khalil Arab, a former Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) holder and longtime CAX volunteer, as our full-time SIVs & Allies Program Manager. Since 2021, we've impacted over 2,500 recently arrived Afghans and wartime allies.

Population(s) Served

Launched in 2021, CAX's STEP (Striving Towards Equity in the Provisioning of Social Services) Initiative focuses on reaching Texas' Black and Latinx veteran populations. Beginning in 2021, we piloted a new staff role, Community Outreach Manager, in an attempt to reach more veterans of color in the Greater Houston Area. Tasked with creating partnerships and building connectivity with community-based organizations serving predominantly Black and Hispanic communities in the Greater Houston Area to build awareness of CAX and connect Black and Hispanic veterans and other military-connected individuals with CAX's platform, the Community Outreach Manager's efforts have proven successful.

Between late 2021 and mid-2022, we observed a 414% increase in the number of contacts added to the Combined Arms system who self-identify as Black and a 315% increase in the number of contacts who self-identify as Latino, as compared to the same period in the previous 12 months.

Population(s) Served

In Spring 2021, we saw a 442% increase in the number of veterans and military-connected individuals seeking food assistance. In February 2022, we began partnering with Galveston County Food Bank (GCFB) to host a monthly mobile pantry event to support veterans and military families in that area.

Due to the success of the Galveston County Veterans Mobile Food Pantries, CAX expanded the program to other regions in Texas. We now host three Mobile Veteran Food Pantries: Galveston, one in Montgomery County, and one on Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base. In total, we have served over 12,000 individuals through our three monthly Veteran Mobile Food Pantries. In mid 2023, we'll be opening a permanent food pantry onsite at the Combined Arms Transition Center located in Houston's east downtown neighborhood.

Population(s) Served
Veterans
Military personnel
Families
Veterans
Military personnel
Families
Veterans
Military personnel
Families
Veterans
Military personnel
Families

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 served

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

Families, Immigrants and migrants, Veterans

Related Program

Transition Center

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Combined Arms has increased the number of clients served connecting them to social services. We grew to serve over 32,000 cumulative clients in 2020, over 52,000 in 2021, and over 63,000 in 2022.

Number of independent organizations served

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

Veterans

Related Program

Transition Center

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Combined Arms has steadily increased the number of member organizations each year, with new organizations being added each month.

Number of referrals to resources offered

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

Veterans

Related Program

Combined Arms Technology System

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Combined Arms' member organizations have grown to provide coverage on more than 1,000 social services for veterans, family members, and special immigrant visas.

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.

Inform veterans & families of resources available to them, and inform the community of their most valuable assets, veterans.

Create a culture of collaboration among veteran serving organizations to drive efficiencies and reduce redundancies.

Create a system of organizations capable of providing coordinated holistic resources and streamlining the connection between them.

Create a technology system capable of measuring the interactions between veterans & families and organizations that serve them, and making that macro-shared data available to them community.

2022 Strategic Plan:

Strategic Goal 1: Develop a scalable and sustainable model for growth.
Objective 1: Win 10 states by 2025 with CAX state technology solution
Objective 2: Grow the network and grow the brand by delivering a low cost, scalable technology solution to 50 corporate partners
Objective 3: Create the force of the future that supports CAX's 2025 growth strategy
Objective 4: Combined Arms is recognized statewide as an 'insight factory' by 2025

Strategic Goal 2 (SO2): Develop a secure and sustainable technology growth strategy.
Objective 1: Develop 2 scalable and user friendly products
Objective 2: Improve our security rating by maximizing 2-pronged security
Objective 3: Drive high user adoption with UX/UI

Strategic Goal 3 (SO3): Develop a clear a scalable marketing plan.
Objective 1: Determine and build marketing foundational support needed to continue winning with TVN and win with expansion
Objective 2: Establish key marketing performance metrics to measure and drive Combined Arms' growth success
Objective 3: Build a community around our brand

Through our collaboration program, we provide actionable data to our member organizations and opportunities to collaborate during quarterly collaborative committee meetings and an annual convening. This is where organizations meet and set goals to make progress toward the Strategic Objectives.

Through our technology system, streamline the connection between veterans and organizations but also provide virtual collaboration and relevant dashboards to indicate progress toward goals.

Our marketing program (an inbound marketing program) drives growth of veterans.

Since our founding in 2015, CAX has helped more than 63,000 veterans and military-connected individuals successfully and quickly navigate the highly fragmented veterans service ecosystem throughout Texas and beyond. In 2020, CAX was selected to spearhead the Texas Veterans Network, powered by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) making Texas the first interconnected state for veteran services. We have served 40,000 individuals through year three of the Texas Veteran Network.

Outside of Texas, CAX has been approached by a range of veteran hubs from across the country to integrate our technology platform and methodology into their own operations to better reach the communities they serve. In response, we launched an earned program revenue model, deploying our technology as the backbone to both nonprofit and for-profit entities. Our technology is currently being used in all 50 states, and we are experiencing a significant demand from organizations outside the veteran ecosystem, requesting to implement our technology as a smart social services mechanism for underserved communities and at-risk populations throughout the US.

CAX recently contracted with two firms who will work collaboratively to help CAX update and refine our brand messaging and strategic positioning, and overhaul our website to reflect our demonstrated success, current programming and vision moving forward.

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 using feedback from the people you serve?

    To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We share the feedback we received with the people we serve

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection

Financials

Combined Arms
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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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  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

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

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Combined Arms

Board of directors
as of 04/14/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mr. Doug Foshee

Sallyport Ventures

Term: 2026 - 2023


Board co-chair

Mr. Lauren Gore

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David Nightingale

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Kelsey Hultburg

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Ashley Eastin

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Johnny Havens

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Cathy Konwisarz

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Jerry Lasco

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Brooks Ballard

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Bill Pritchett

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David Ulrey

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Patrick Lissonnet

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Jeff Hart

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Barb Sweredoski

Rear Admiral, US Navy (Ret.)

Bill Ahmanson

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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 4/14/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person with a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. 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 disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • 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 have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • 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.