Moss Adams Voices

Kasey Woodard: Supporting Service

Kasey Woodard is a military spouse with two grandparents who are veterans of World War II. She helps the Veterans BRG acknowledge this year’s celebration of Veterans Day.

Kasey Woodard

Kasey Woodard, tax manager in Phoenix, started dating her husband, Karl, during college. Karl is a medical professional for the US Navy, and their family has been relocated three times. Karl is also required to leave home for extended periods and the family must manage without him. Kasey’s role as a military spouse has its challenges, but Moss Adams has provided flexibility in her schedule to manage her responsibilities when she’s parenting their four children alone. Kasey recently joined the Veterans BRG, and, on Veterans Day 2022, she discusses the needs of the veteran community.

Can you share what Veterans Day means to you and your family?

Karl’s grandfather served in the US military, and both of my grandfathers served during World War II, so we believe serving your country takes courage and sacrifice. It’s something to be proud of.

I get emotional thinking about my grandfathers fighting in World War II because it’s such a huge part of our world history. I always feel like I need to do more to honor them, including making sure my children know about their service, or giving back to the veteran community. That also means taking my citizenship seriously. We all should learn the meaning of Veterans Day, do what we can to take care of our country, and honor the sacrifices the veterans have made for us.

Kasey Woodard

Is that why you decided to get involved with the Veterans BRG?

Yes! My husband and I have met veterans from other branches who are discharged with injuries. He worries for them. They’ve spent so many years training and they may struggle to transition back to civilian life. Sometimes, those skills don’t easily translate to a civilian job and veterans can struggle to find employment.

I think that’s an important part of the Veterans BRG’s mission—to hire more veterans at Moss Adams. It’s been great to meet others at the firm who have served in the military, or maybe are in a similar situation to me as a military spouse. It’s reassuring to know there’s a community I can reach out to when I need it.

Can you talk about the challenges, or sacrifices, you’ve faced as a military spouse?

It’s obviously very different because my life isn’t on the line, but a military spouse signs up to be a supportive partner. There are times when I’m counting the days until my husband is back because I don’t know how much longer I can handle it on my own.

For example, there was a time I was parenting alone and felt totally overwhelmed. I said to myself that I couldn’t do it anymore, then that same night my son had a medical issue. Sometimes, Karl is unreachable or can only call me once a day. He’s great at supporting me from afar, reaching out to our parents to help when he’s unable to.

Still, it gets really hard. I sometimes think about how my grandmothers were at home living in fear while their husbands were overseas at war, which makes me worry about Karl being deployed. I know there’s that risk, but that fear is in the back of my mind. It’s not our reality right now. In the end, I realize how much more capable I am than I thought.

Kasey Woodard

How do your children experience your family’s lifestyle?

They run with it. There are cons to moving as often as we have, such as life upheaval, finding new doctors, meeting new people. One time we only had two weeks notice before a move, which was a whirlwind. The military coordinates it all, so our family is always up for the adventure.

I did mourn their childhoods at one point. I grew up in Spokane, Washington. My world was very small and I loved having the same friends all throughout school. Moving several times has meant my children have to make new friends. They don’t have lifelong friends, just new friends—always. It was hard to think they were missing out on what I had, but I had to remind myself that different doesn’t mean worse.

They’re happy children. They’re proud to have a parent in the US Navy. I’m sure it will benefit them in the long run.

Kasey Woodard

How has Moss Adams made the difference for you in your experience as a military spouse?

Personally, I’ve had a career advisor acknowledge that I was struggling to balance my work responsibilities with my responsibilities to my family. She helped me understand how to adjust my bandwidth, which made things more manageable for me in my career. Currently, I work on a reduced schedule. It’s helpful to know the firm supports me as a working mother.

Also, it’s so nice to have a community within the Veterans BRG. The firm has been doing a great job of educating us all about how to be more inclusive, and I think the trainings and external speakers have given me an opportunity to learn so much.

I’m still learning how we can be more dedicated toward the veteran community. Sometimes, it can feel like a lot or that we’re pulled in so many different directions to show up for everyone. So many veterans have seen terrible things and they don’t feel comfortable talking about it, but they struggle mentally and physically because of it. I do think we can do better to defeat the stigma of talking about these things so we’re aware of the mental toll our veterans take on from their service.

It’s hard to help everyone, but all we need to do is our part to keep the momentum. Maybe that’s learning something new or keeping veterans in mind when we vote. A little empathy and kindness can go a long way.

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