Veterans Day profile: Army veteran Ron Steptoe

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Ronald Steptoe is a West Point graduate and former Army officer. He is the Chairman and CEO of the Steptoe Group, LLC and an Adjunct Instructor in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. He often presents on mental and behavioral health disorders and co-morbid physical conditions in the veteran and military communities. He's also a strong supporter of #DayForTheBrave.



#DayForTheBrave is the first national veteran-focused day of giving, a day to show U.S. troops and veterans appreciation and respect. Around 200 veteran organizations -- including the Wounded Warrior Project, the USO and the Fisher House -- will be working together to raise more than $1 million in just 24 hours for troops. You too can get involved here.

SEE ALSO: How Matt Zeller is helping translators who aid US troops​

AOL.com: Why did you join the U.S. military?

Ron Steptoe: I wanted to go to the nation's number one school for leadership. I wanted to be a senior leader in either the military, corporate America and my community. I was also recruited to play basketball at West Point. Thus, I was able to play Division 1 basketball and also attend one of the nation's most challenging and prestigious academic institutions. I knew going to West Point came with a commitment of 5 years Active and 3 years in the Inactive Ready Reserves. This commitment to the military provided me with the opportunity to utilize, leverage and expand upon what I learned at West Point.



AOL.com: What does it mean to you to have served in the U.S. military?

Ron Steptoe: It is one of the highest honors I could have been privileged to have bestowed upon me as a young adult. The nation entrusted me with its greatest treasure, its sons and daughters. I have the opportunity to influence, develop and lead America's finest talent. Additionally the military also entrusted me with managing tens of millions of dollars of equipment by the age of 22.

AOL.com: What did you gain from serving in the military and what did you have to give up?

Ron Steptoe: I learned that I could handle a great deal of stress and perform at a very high level while ensuring the safety of the individuals I was placed in charge of. I have friendships that have lasted for the past 28 years. When I left the military, I initially had to give up being a part of a team that had tangible and real impact upon the security and safety of the nation and its people.

AOL.com: What do most people forget or overlook about the men and women serving in the military?

Ron Steptoe: Most people really overlook how selfless an individual has to be to subjugate themselves to a team and purpose where their life can constantly be at grave risk. This level of commitment to a team, task, purpose and mission for the benefit of others is extremely undervalued by many in the civilian community. The selflessness, loyalty and commitment are values and beliefs that are core ingredients which effectuate our nation's very freedom.

AOL.com: What are you doing today and how did your service help you?

Ron Steptoe: My military service provided me with the leadership experience, confidence and aptitude to be the co-founder and CEO of a national firm that provides subject matter expertise, consultation and market leadership in addressing the veteran and military community health and healthcare needs in the commercial and government sectors.

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Veterans Day profile: Army veteran Ron Steptoe
A visitor walks past 'Robert Capa 'Soldier taking cover at Omaha Beach on D-Day, June 6th 1944' during the 'Life. I grandi fotografi' (Life. The great photographers) exhibition at the auditorium on April 30, 2013 in Rome. The exhibition showing some 150 pictures taken from 1936 when the US magazine Life magazine premiered will be open from May, 1 to August 4, 2013. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE, MANDATORY CREDIT OF THE ARTIST, TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images)
Invasion of Inchon, September 15, 1950, Korean War, Washington, National Archives. (Photo by Photo12/UIG/Getty Images)
This 11 September 2001 file photo shows Marcy Borders covered in dust as she takes refuge in an office building after one of the World Trade Center towers collapsed in New York. Borders was caught outside on the street as the cloud of smoke and dust enveloped the area. The woman was caught outside on the street as the cloud of smoke and dust enveloped the area. AFP PHOTO/Stan HONDA (Photo credit should read STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)
DEH AFGHAN, AFGHANISTAN - JUNE 27: Soldiers from the 2nd Battalion 4th Infantry Regiment do morning exercises at a U.S. base at Deh Afghan June 27, 2006 in the Zabul province of southern Afghanistan. The troops are participating in Operation Mountain Thrust against Taliban fighters across southern Afghanistan. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
AFGHANISTAN PAKISTAN BORDER, AFGHANISTAN - OCTOBER 20: An American soldier holds a U.S. Army hand grenade on which a soldier wrote 'One free trip to Allah' while at an observation post in the Paktika province of Afghanistan Oct. 20, 2006 overlooking the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. The outpost, only 800 meters from the Pakistan, is frequently attacked by Taliban forces, many of whom cross over from the South Waziristan tribal area of Pakistan, according to American soldiers. Most Taliban believe they are fighting a holy war or 'jihad' against non-Muslims in Afghanistan, and those who die in jihad are promised an eternity in paradise. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
PAKTIKA PROVINCE, PAKTIKA - OCTOBER 15: US Army soldiers in the 1/501st of the 25th Infantry Division shield their eyes from the powerful rotor wash of a Chinook cargo helicopter as they are picked up from a mission October 15, 2009 in Paktika Province, Afghanistan. Soldiers of the 1/501 scoured the Afghan countryside near the Pakistani border on a two-day mission into a tense part of Paktika province, an that American soldiers had not patroled for over three years. The troops were looking for suspected Taliban weapons stores and hideouts. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
ALEPPO, SYRIA - JUNE 09: An injured Syrian man is carried on a stretcher by emergency staff after a barrel bomb attack dropped by Syrian regime forces on a bakery in Ansari neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria on June 09, 2015. (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
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