Stafford County is known for its rich American and military history. Civil war soldiers camped out in north Stafford, George Washington grew up in southern Stafford, and many prominent historical figures made their way through the community. With our proximity so close to Washington, DC and Quantico in our backyard, 13% of Stafford’s population is made up of veterans. Many of our veterans are also entrepreneurs and business owners, and the County is proud to serve them.

Transitioning into the civilian workforce can be challenging and resources to assist may often remain unknown. With such a large portion of the Stafford population being active and retired military, Stafford has made it a priority to provide resources to veterans who may be interested in starting or expanding their business. These include access to education opportunities, veteran focused events, and state and national programs.

Of many concerns that veterans face, education is a top priority. Stafford offers access to a variety of colleges and universities that seek to support veterans through higher education and training. For example, the University of Mary Washington provides priority registration and financial assistance, and Germanna Community College offers work study programs designed for veterans and post-deployment resources.

Stafford’s Economic Development and the Stafford EDA work directly with veterans interested in starting or growing a business. Bi-annually, the EDA hosts the Veteran Business Bootcamp which educates veteran on business resources available to them and also, they have the opportunity to talk one-on-one with established veteran-owned businesses and leaders in the community. Partnering with the local UMW Small Business Development Center, this event covers a variety of business subjects from start-up, financing, development, and how to grow a business. Learn more about Veterans Business Bootcamp by reading our recent blog post.

The department also has a close relationship with Quantico leaders and officials, working in tandem to develop a workforce pipeline for transitioning veterans. While this is still in the process, veterans have access to Stafford’s business resources on base with flyers and brochures provided around the community.

Additional state and national programs are available to veterans when they transition from military service to civilian life, and also for retired veterans who are simply looking for a new business venture. The mission of these organizations helps service members and veterans find meaningful employment or start their own business. These resources include Hiring Our Heroes, Virginia’s Hire Vets Now initiative, and the Office of Veterans Business Development through the SBA. Another resource is the V3 Program, which aids businesses and provides best practices for recruiting, hiring, and retaining veteran employees.

Many veterans choose Stafford for their business headquarters because of its access to resources, proximity to DC and Quantico, and the quality of life. Stafford proudly supports veterans and connect them with specific resources that meet their unique business needs.

Stafford County is proud to be home of Marine Corps Base Quantico, and the crossroads to innovative technology and entrepreneurship. Together we serve one another. If you are a veteran interested in starting or growing a business, please contact Stafford Department of Economic Development and Tourism as your one-stop-shop for business resources in the Stafford region.