Meet Our Board of Directors

Paul Lavelle, CMSgt, USAF, (Ret), MSC
Founder and President

Like his military experience, Paul’s personal story uniquely prepared him for his work with Operation Restored Warrior. An outspoken atheist for most of his life, in 2003 he experienced a life-changing encounter with Jesus’ presence on the side of a snow-covered mountain in Colorado, radically changing his life’s direction and mission. About a year later, Paul began a 4-year stint working with bestselling author John Eldredge and the Ransomed Heart Ministry Team as a member of their team, during which time he developed a deep desire to see healing and freedom come to his fellow military warrior. In 2008, Paul founded ORW with the assistance and dedication of fellow military veterans from each of the services, with whom he has helped heal hundreds of our nation’s warriors and their families.

Jon Iadonisi, PhD
CEO, Vizsense, Inc.

Dr. Jon Iadonisi designs and builds new types of technology businesses that tackle antiquated methods and legacy thinking. He’s successfully founded, scaled, and exited two profitable technology companies that spanned public safety and cyber security industries. Currently, he is the Founder and CEO of VizSense (also known as Viz), a Dallas-based Influencer Marketing and Sales Intelligence Firm that works with Fortune 500 clients, delivering highly specialized marketing and sales campaigns engineered to a specific brand’s DNA. Jon is a computer scientist and former Navy SEAL, who invented new capabilities for the Special Operations Community and Central Intelligence Agency. He is a combat-wounded and decorated veteran who earned a B.S. in Computer Science from the US Naval Academy, and M.S. in Homeland Security from San Diego State University, and a Ph.D. from the University of New Haven, with a focus on Cyber-Crime. Jon is also a frequent contributor to national news outlets and conference venues.

Chad Smith, President, Veterans Lodge

Chad Smith is a licensed contractor in the state of Florida, and began his career working in construction during summer breaks.  He attended Valdosta State University graduating with a B.B.A. with a major in finance and minor in accounting. Afterwards, he worked as a tax auditor for 12 years. Always knowing his real passion was for building, he built his personal home in 2004. During a scheduled inspection from the building inspector a conversation arose and he asked Chad if he wanted to be a contractor. Chad agreed and the inspector helped him get certified. In 2005, Chad started Chadwell Custom Homes and has built custom homes in north Florida and south Georgia. In 2009, Chad was contacted by Julie Connell, who needed his help with a veteran project. That conversation turned into a non profit for veterans called Veterans Lodge and a blessed marriage of 11 years and still counting.  In 2019, Chad and Julie were introduced to Paul and Operation Restored Warrior. Chad attended a Drop Zone the same year and saw the powerful impact that ORW has on our veterans, first responders, and national leaders.  As a result of his life-changing experience, a lifelong friendship and a sincere desire to spread the good news of Jesus and help veterans was born.