Gregory Coffos has been appointed to lead the Riverside County Veterans’ Services Department, officials announced Thursday.
Coffos will lead a staff tasked with “helping more than 50,000 veterans each year identify, register for and receive benefits available as a result of their military service,” officials said.
“Gregory’s military service and nonprofit work will provide a critical perspective to the way the county provides services to our veterans,” Board Chair and 1st District Supervisor Kevin Jeffries said in a statement. “His commitment to the mission, as well as dedication to finding opportunities to serve more veterans in more ways, will have a marked impact within our veteran community.”
Assistance from the Veterans’ Services Department ranges from housing support and social services to college tuition and healthcare benefits, officials said.
“Veterans have a plethora of needs and it takes a village to provide these myriad services that range from high needs to low needs,” Coffos said in a statement. “My goal is to establish supportive relationships with other agencies serving the community, so that together, we will help even more veterans.”
Coffos has worked for 10 years in the nonprofit sector, connecting unhoused residents with housing, and he did five years in the U.S. Navy as a logistics specialist. During his military service Coffos was assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 146 in Lemoore, California.
“Throughout his career, Coffos has sought to draw upon relationships with like-missioned agencies to create a greater impact,” officials said. “His most recent post was the director of housing for the Inland Empire for Step Up on Second.”
Coffos also worked for the Path of Life Ministry and U.S. Vets, where he assisted veterans in the transition from living on the streets to living in a residence.
His official start date with the county is Sept. 5.
Officials highlighted one noteworthy priority for Veterans’ Services — “enhanced services delivery within the county’s holistic, no-wrong-door integrated services model.”
Coffos — who officials said was “no stranger to a spectrum of services, one of his children is a recent high school graduate, while the other child is starting kindergarten — lives in San Jacinto with his wife and two kids.
Grant Gautsche, the previous Veterans’ Services director, retired from the county in June.