Prior to entering the MoDA program, Mr. Vazquez served as the Acting Director and Deputy Director, Defense Suicide Prevention Office. Mr. Vazquez served in the United States Air Force for over 21 years as a Human Resources Officer and served in a variety of human resources positions ranging from base-level, the Air Force Personnel Center, the Air Combat Command, Headquarters United States Air Force, two command tours, and on the Joint Staff J-1.  He has served in positions throughout the United States and overseas.  Upon separation from military service, Mr. Vazquez worked in various positions for the Washington Headquarters Services, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, and the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness. Mr. Vazquez is a graduate of the Air Force Squadron Officer School, the Air Command and Staff College, the Air War College, and completed the George Washington University, College of Professional Studies Senior Leaders Program, and the Federal Executive Institute’s Leadership for a Democratic Society. His decorations include two Air Force Achievement Medals, Five Meritorious Service Medals, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Secretary of Defense Award for Excellence, and the Office of the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Civilian Service.   He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Manhattan College, New York, a Master’s Degree in Management from Troy University, Alabama, and a Master’s Degree in Human Resources from the Catholic University of America, Washington, DC.

Suicide Prevention in the U.S. Military Community

 According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control, Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. It was responsible for more than 48,000 deaths in 2018, resulting in about one death every 11 minutes. The U.S. Military Community is not immune. While factors may differ, the risk and challenges associated with military service are separate and distinct from the civilian population in general.

The brief looks at Suicide Prevention in the U.S. Military Community with a focus on the non-clinical aspects of Suicide Prevention. It reviews the current data that are being tracked, what is known, the challenges, what is being done well, and what can be done better.

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