Don’t Do It Alone: Transition Advice From a 21-Year Army Veteran

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“It is not a sense of weakness to ask for help.”

A U.S. Army veteran with more than 21 years of service, Santiago Leon knows first-hand the challenges that veterans may face when transitioning back home after the military, and why you shouldn’t make the transition alone. This week on the FourBlock Podcast, he recounts his military experience and shares what it was like to complete multiple deployments with young children at home.

Santiago recalls his transition back home, sharing some of the challenges he faced, why it was so hard to admit he needed help, how he eventually found his way in the civilian workforce, and how that led him to devoting his career to helping other veterans find meaningful employment today.

Santiago also talks about his current role with Wounded Warrior Project and the free resources and services that the organization provides. As a Warriors to Work Specialist for Wounded Warrior Project, Santiago’s focus is on helping service members, veterans, and their family support members find meaningful employment. Santiago has worked in the workforce development field for over 10 years and was selected as a key speaker for the 2015 National Employment Network Association Annual Conference and the 2015 California Workforce Association Annual Conference.

Santiago currently serves as a Board Member for the Wounded Warrior Support Network, Vice Chair for the Veterans Employment Committee of San Diego County, Career Readiness Instructor for FourBlock, and Ambassador for the Travis Manion Foundation.

Santiago continues to serve in the Army Reserves as Senior Instructor for the Noncommissioned Officer Academy, training the next generation of military leaders.


Welcome to the FourBlock Podcast, a show that examines veteran career transition and the military-civilian divide in the workplace. General Charles Krulak coined the term “Three Block War” to describe the nature of 21st-century military service defined by peace-keeping, humanitarian aid, and full combat. But what happens next? Veterans are often unprepared to return home and begin new careers. We call this the Fourth Block.

FourBlock is a national non-profit that has supported thousands of transitioning service members across the nation in beginning new and meaningful careers.

Mike Abrams (@fourblock) is an Afghanistan veteran, FourBlock founder, and author of two military transition books. He’ll be representing the military transition perspective. Lindsey Pollak (@lindsaypollak) is a career and workplace expert and New York Times bestselling author of three career advice books. Lindsey will be representing the civilian perspective of this issue.

Veterans, explore new industries and make the right connections. Find a career that fits your calling. Join us at Sponsor our program or host a class to equip more of our veterans at

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