About Us

Contact Us


If you’d like to attend one of our monthly breakfasts,  join us on a day trip, volunteer, or talk to us about recording a veteran’s oral history.

Contact: Todd DePastino, exective director

Write: 200 Magnolia Place, Pittsburgh, PA 15228

Phone: 412-623-9029

Email: todd@veteransbreakfastclub.com

Website: The Veterans Breakfast Club

Facebook: The Veterans Breakfast Club

Twitter: @VetsBC

Our Mission

The mission of the Veterans Breakfast Club is to create communities of listening around veterans and their stories to ensure that this living history will never be forgotten. We believe that through our work, people will be educated, healed, and inspired.

The Veterans Breakfast Club is a non-religious, non-political 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Goals

  • To create communities of listening around veterans and their stories.
  • To promote veteran storytelling programs.
  • To capture, preserve, and share veterans’ stories for future generations.
  • To raise public awareness about the veteran experience.

History


PH_071913-13The seed for the Veterans Breakfast Club was planted in November 2007, when Dan Cavanaugh, a co-founder of the VBC, volunteered as a bus captain on trips that take veterans to the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.  Dan’s father was a World War II veteran who, toward the end of his life, opened up to his son about his experiences of war.  Finding much wisdom in the stories he heard on the bus, Dan hit upon the idea of hosting breakfasts where veterans could gather and share their stories with each other and anyone else who cared to listen.

When Todd DePastino, a professor and writer of history, took an interest in Dan’s project, the two of them founded a non-profit organization to host their storytelling events. Word spread, and more veterans flocked to the monthly breakfasts, anxious to tell their stories and bond with others who served their country, many of whom experienced the emotional trauma of war.

By 2010, the VBC had expanded to monthly events in four locations. As many as 200 attended the South Hills breakfast, and attendance at the other locations –Penn Hills, Moon Township, and North Hills – was rapidly increasing. In 2010, Dan Cavanaugh was nominated as a finalist for the Post-Gazette Community Champions Award for his work with the VBC.

In 2011, the VBC received 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status and expanded its programs to include region-wide events, such as the Veterans Day breakfast at Duquesne University which drew 600 attendees, and a special VBC trip to the National WWII Museum in New Orleans.

By early 2012, the VBC began recording, preserving, and sharing the stories of local veterans.  Todd DePastino teamed up Kevin Farkas of the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative, and together they’ve conducted and recorded hundreds of long-form oral history interviews and live storytelling events.

Expanding to more than fifteen locations throughout Western Pennsylvania by 2015, the Veterans Breakfast Club currently hosts 30-40 storytelling events a year.  In addition to the breakfasts, VBC publishes Veteran Voices: The Magazine of The Veterans Breakfast Club and co-hosts “Veteran Voices: The Podcast,” a monthly Internet broadcast discussing news, current events, and topical discussions with authors, filmmakers, artists, historians, and other storytellers of the veteran experience.    

Board of Directors

Ray Amelio (President)

Ben Stahl (Vice President)

Michelle Zmijanac (Secretary)

Amber Spells (Treasurer)

Rocky Bleier (Honorary)

Clem Blazewick

Dana Del Bianco

Julian Gray

Betty Karleski

Ben Wright

Staff

Todd DePastinoExecutive Director
Todd DePastino

  • Todd@veteransbreakfastclub.com | 412-623-9029
  • Bio
KFDirector of Multimedia
Kevin Farkas

  • Kevin@veteransbreakfastclub.com | 412-423-8034
  • Bio
Post-9/11 Veterans Nick Work-001
Storytelling Project Director
Nick Grimes

  • Nick@veteransbreakfastclub.com
  • Bio

Press Center

VBC in the News

Press Releases

Go to the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative press center.

Content Sharing & Copyright

The public is invited to download, reproduce, and share our stories and images in accordance with our Creative Commons License.

All content on this site and elsewhere produced by the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative is protected by copyright law.  Such content is not in the public domain and may hold additional copyright restrictions to those listed herein.

CREATIVE COMMONS LICENSE

The public, including media, is free to share, copy, distribute, or transmit content found on this site under the following conditions (click here for specific legal code):

Attribution — For any reuse or distribution, you must make clear to others the source of this content. You must attribute (recognize by name) any and all content as from the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative.   A link to the original source is requested.

Noncommercial — You may not use content for commercial purposes.  Media/news outlets may use content for news or journalistic purposes only.

No Derivative Works — You may not alter, transform, or build upon content.

Some conditions above may be waived only with permission from the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Intiative.  Non-watermarked images are available upon request.  Use of content by 3rd parties does not constitute an endorsement by the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative.

The Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Intiative retains and manages copyright control of any and all content on this site or associated sites of ownership or control.

PUBLIC NOTICE OF RECORDING & CONSENT

The commercial and/or unauthorized use of media content derived from events sponsored by the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative is prohibited.

Participants/attendees at events sponsored by the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative consent to be filmed/taped and otherwise recorded and agree that the Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative may use their voice, name and filmed/taped and/or recorded image and likeness, without limitation or restriction, and without payment of any kind, for all purposes, in connection with any other production (including without limitation, the advertising and promotion thereof), in perpetuity, in any and all languages, formats, manner, media, devices, processes and technologies, now known and later devised.

The Veterans Breakfast Club and/or the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative proceed in reliance upon this notice and participants’ consent-by-participation in connection with its production activities.