The Veterans Consortium Pro Bono Program: A Call to Service 

By Colleen E. Miller, Esq. 

*This is an article from the Fall 2023 issue of Combat Stress

My mother is an Air Force Veteran, and my grandfather fought in World War II in the Army Air Corp. He later transitioned into the Air Force, where he spent the remainder of his career. My mother had a long-term partner that was drafted and served in the Vietnam War. When I was a child, he told stories about parachuting into active combat zones and wading through the dense tropical foliage. He was also an alcoholic and, at times, cruel. I sometimes wonder if his life, and my childhood, would have been different if he had the support, services, and benefits that he earned. President George Washington said, “The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the Veterans of earlier wars are treated and appreciated by their nation.” 

No matter what path one takes to become a lawyer, it is a privilege. With that privilege comes a duty to serve those in need. I started as a volunteer with The Veterans Consortium Pro Bono Program (TVC) in 2018, and now serve as the Deputy Director of Volunteer Outreach Education and Placement. At TVC, “We believe that our Veterans, our nation’s defenders, deserve the care, benefits and compensation that they were promised, and the best legal services, free of charge, to meet their challenges.” More than thirty years ago, with congressional legislation, four national Veterans service organizations, The American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, National Veterans Legal Services Program, and Paralyzed Veterans of America, created TVC to enlist and train volunteer lawyers who, on a pro bono basis, would represent Veterans in appealing denials, reduction, or termination of disability compensation and other benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs. The appeals, heard by the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, involve a wide range of issues: VA disability, educational assistance, survivor benefits, and pension benefit claims. The injuries suffered by these Veterans run the gamut from psychological to all manner of physical infirmities, including impaired vision, hearing loss, degenerative joint disorders, heart conditions and various types of cancers.   

In recent years, TVC has expanded its legal services to address other legal needs for Veterans. These services include our Discharge Upgrade Program, Women Veterans Legal Assistance Program, and Veterans Naturalization Assistance Program. TVC also offers a Veteran and VSO helpline. Our contact information and helpline information can be found here: website,, helpline no. and e-mail address, (855) 466-9678 or [email protected]  


Colleen E. Miller currently serves as the Deputy Director of Volunteer Outreach, Education, and Placement for The Veterans Consortium’s CAVC Practice. Prior to joining The Veterans Consortium, Colleen Miller served as sole legal counsel of operations for The Collier Companies, a multifamily housing management and real estate development company with over $2.0B assets under management and over $1.0B in development. She also served as a Career and Professional Development Advisor for the University of Florida Levin College of Law. Colleen Miller previously served as the co-managing partner for Quarles & Brady LLP’s Tampa office. With over fifteen years of experience, she specialized in commercial loan disputes, title issues, creditor’s claims, construction defect and insurance coverage disputes in both state and federal courts. While at Quarles & Brady, Colleen chaired Quarles Cares for the Tampa office and grew its community outreach programs and charitable contributions. She also developed and implemented Quarles’s partnership with The Veterans Consortium across its ten offices. Through this partnership, attorneys represented Veterans in their appeals for disability benefits before the United States Court of Appeals for Veteran Claims. 

Colleen graduated summa cum laude from Texas Christian University with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. In 2007, Colleen graduated magna cum laude with a Juris Doctor from the University of Miami School of Law. She resides in Maryland with her husband, Joshua Miller, and their retired racing greyhound, Lara, and adopted cat, Mac. 


Combat Stress Magazine

Combat Stress magazine is written with our military Service Members, Veterans, first responders, and their families in mind. We want all of our members and guests to find contentment in their lives by learning about stress management and finding what works best for each of them. Stress is unavoidable and comes in many shapes and sizes. It can even be considered a part of who we are. Being in a state of peaceful happiness may seem like a lofty goal but harnessing your stress in a positive way makes it obtainable. Serving in the military or being a police officer, firefighter or paramedic brings unique challenges and some extraordinarily bad days. The American Institute of Stress is dedicated to helping you, our Heroes and their families, cope with and heal your mind and body from the stress associated with your careers and sacrifices.

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