We value and respect all women Veterans seeking support. We demonstrate visionary leadership. We create an environment that fosters committed community integration, belonging and social connectedness, for the women we serve, our employees, key stakeholders and partners. We engage in and promote the access of resources to all women veterans and improve their quality of life. We practice the highest ethical behavior and personal integrity. We implement responsible financial management in the development of resources and programs.
Mea WilliamsPresident / CEO
Mea Williams, born in Cambridge, Ohio, is a Navy Veteran, a mother, a wife and the President/CEO of Grace After Fire, an organization that assists women Veterans with the transition process and reintegration back into the civilian sector after their military service. In her role, Mea directs and oversees all efforts and activities related to developing and implementing Table Talk ™ Color Me Camo, an innovative peer-to peer program and other Veteran focused efforts led by the organization .
In 2000, Mea began her military journey in Norfolk, VA working on board the flight deck of Amphibious Assault Ship USS Bataan (LHD-5) as part of the crash and salvage team, personnel who are on standby ready to respond to any mishaps that may happen on the deck during takeoff and landing of aircraft. Upon returning from a seven-month deployment as part of the crew of one of the first ships to respond to the September 11th attacks, Mea decided it was time to change paths to do something she had always loved - journalism. After three years on sea, Mea became a Navy journalist stationed at the Navy Public Affairs Center in Norfolk. There, she toured the States and many bases interviewing people highlighting newsworthy events and writing featured stories that captured the true essences of what Navy sailors do. In 2006, Mea ended her Navy career as a Journalist and later moved with her family to Houston, Texas.
After serving her country for 6 and half years, Mea earned both her Bachelor's degree in Business Management and her MBA with a specialization in Healthcare Administration from Ashford University. Due to her unrelenting determination, passion to see others reach their full potential and strong people skills, Mea was nominated by her peers' and mentors for and then selected to participate in Leadership Texas 2015. Now a resident of Katy, Texas, Mea carries out her purpose of effecting change in the lives of many in and around her community.
Melissa McKennonProgram Director
Melissa McKennon joined the Army at age 17, and attended Basic Training during the summer of her Junior and Senior year at Sidney Lanier High School. She served 8 years in the United States Army as a Patient Administration Specialist and was stationed at Weisbaden, Germany and Brooke Army Medical Center in her home town of San Antonio, TX. Her duties included record keeping, billing and coding, scheduling appointments, admissions and dispositions, medical boards and Air EVAC. She has a Bachelor's degree in Human Services from Wayland Baptist University and is pursuing her Master's in Psychology. She can relate to being an Active Duty Soldier, Army Spouse, Veteran, Full-time student, and mother of Xaidyn 5, and Xasha 1. The ability to have and continue to serve in different ways allows her to connect with others in multiple ways. Melissa is known to travel the world but does it in the company of her husband of 7 years Jason, and their two children. She is an active member of her community as youth coach, PTA, and exercise partner.
Roberta CastanedaBexar County Outreach Coordinator
Roberta was born in Harlingen, Texas and grew up as a military child due to her father serving over 20 years in the United States Air Force. Roberta joined the United States Army in 2000 and honorably served for 10 years.
During her tenure in the military she served as a Preventative Dentistry Specialist, Practice Manager, Clinic Manager, and Operations and Training Manager. She attended Professional Leadership School and served as the Equal Opportunity Leader, Sexual Assault Victim Advocate, Chairman of the Social Community, and Unit Ambassador.
Roberta received her Bachelor's Degree from Wayland Baptist University in Business and is currently enrolled in the Master of Arts in Counseling Graduate Program and Non-Profit Management Certification Course.
Now serving as a Bexar County Outreach Coordinator, she is committed to serving Women Veterans and their families as she is able to relate in a multitude of ways. She is supported by 4 wonderful children as well as family and friends. She enjoys volunteering, traveling, dancing, fitness, mentoring, and inspiring others.
Kanetrica PattonHarris County Outreach Coordinator
Kanetrica was born in Cleveland, Texas and partially raised in Houston, Texas. She always knew that she wanted to be a great influence to her community and make a difference in the world, so she joined the United States Army Reserve at the age of 17. She has served both as an Active Duty and Reserve Soldier over the past 19 years. She has been deployed on several assignments to include: Iraq (2003) for Operation Iraqi Freedom as a Pipeline Engineer, Rambala Panama (2007) as a Construction Supervisor for a vertical/horizontal construction engineering rehabilitation project, Fort Sill Oklahoma (2008-2010) as an Observer Controller/Trainer (OC/T) on military weapon systems; Fort Hood, Texas (2012-2013) as an Observer Controller/Trainer (OC/T) on IED Force Protection/Drivers Training lanes for deploying Soldiers and Airmen; and Afghanistan (2015-2016) for Operation Resolute Sentinel as Supply Support Activity (SSA) NCOIC for Logistics. Throughout the 19 years of service she has had the distinguished opportunity to serve as a Trainer Facilitator on weapon systems, force protection and drivers training for mobilizing Soldiers; both Army and National Guard, Air Force Airman (platoons/squadrons), and the Navy. She has also served in the capacity of Equal Opportunity Leader, Family Readiness Liaison, SHARP SARC and Logistics NCOIC. Kanetrica continues to protect and serve in the United States Army Reserve on the home front to keep her country free.
Kanetrica received her Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering Technology, Master of Arts in Counseling; and Master of Science with a Concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy from Prairie View A&M University.
Kanetrica now uses her vase knowledge and expertise while serving as a Harris County Outreach Coordinator on the Grace After Fire team. With a strong support system of her family to include; two daughters Jaidah and Jordyn whom she adores greatly, she has been afforded the opportunity to excel and be very successful in her endeavors. Kanetrica's motivation, heart and passion ensures that the mission: Helping women Veterans help themselves is executed and that the work she does everyday changes the lives she serves.