LINTHICUM, MD, January 3, 2023 – NFM Lending is pleased to honor Staff Sergeant George Foster Jr., USMC, as the NFM Salute for January 2023.

Foster was born in 1929 in Woburn, Massachusetts. He grew up on a dairy farm and spent much of his childhood milking cows and doing farm work. In 1951, Foster’s idyllic small-town life changed forever when he was drafted into the Korean War. At 21 years old, Foster joined the U.S. Marine Corps.

After completing training in Parris Island, South Carolina, Foster deployed to Korea. He fought in several key battles, including the Battle of the Punchbowl, Operation Bumblebee, and the Battle of Heartbreak Ridge. Having lost many close friends to the war, Foster volunteered to do a second tour of duty in 1953 to honor their sacrifices. When he returned stateside in 1954, he was assigned to be a security guard at the American embassies in Moscow, Russia, and Munich, Germany. One of his proudest moments in the Marine Corps was guarding King Saud of Saudi Arabia for President Eisenhower’s 1957 inauguration and walking in the inaugural parade. After six years of unforgettable experiences, Foster was honorably discharged from the military in 1957.

Foster graduated from college in 1960 at 30 years old with an accounting degree. He soon became a licensed CPA and worked as an accountant in Los Angeles for the U.S. General Accounting Office. Foster was devoted to his family and cherished spending time with his children. The values he learned in the Marines stayed with him after he left the service, and he passed them on to his loved ones. His daughter, Meg Christ, said, “He always taught me when I was a little girl, ‘When you fall down, you get back up.'” In 2022, Foster passed away from cancer, leaving his family with many rich memories and a time capsule of his life that he had hidden away. “He was just a kind soul, was very humble,” said Christ. “So after he passed, finding all of these amazing things he had done, I wish he were here to ask more questions. There’s so many questions. He was amazing.”

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, December 1, 2022 – NFM Lending is pleased to honor Lieutenant Colonel Jason Secrest, ARNG, as the NFM Salute for December 2022.

Growing up in Pennsylvania, Secrest knew from a young age that he wanted to serve his country. Both his grandfathers were WWII Veterans, and listening to their stories made him want to pursue a similar path. So, in 1999, Secrest enlisted in the Army National Guard (ARNG). Three years later, in 2002, he received his commission with the Pennsylvania National Guard while in Troop C 1-104th Cavalry.

From 2005-2006, Secrest and his team deployed to Ar-Ramadi, Iraq, to support Operation Iraqi Freedom. “It was IEDs [improvised explosive devices] and a lot of raids, street combat; it was a real wakeup call for a young kid from Central Pennsylvania,” said Secrest. “A couple of IED explosions really rocked me. It’s just a surreal moment when you’re walking and see a puff of dust kick up next to you and you realize someone just took a shot at you.” Secrest’s courage and leadership earned him two Bronze Star Medals, the Army Achievement Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, and the Combat Action Badge.

Later in 2008, his unit deployed to Egypt to join the Multinational Force and Observers, an international peacekeeping force. As a member of this group, Secrest enforced Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty mandates in the Sinai Peninsula. In 2012, Secrest went to Kandahar, Afghanistan, as a Support Operations Advisor to the Afghan Army. He taught combat tactics and logistics to Afghan soldiers and officers.

Secrest currently serves with the New York National Guard and leads its 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry Regiment. “I think people look at the National Guard as a weekend warrior mentality: one weekend a month, two weeks in the summer,” said Secrest. “I’m here to tell you that one weekend a month, two weeks in the summer turned into three overseas tours, deployments to combat zones, and two COVID-19 mobilizations.”

In addition to serving his county, Secrest serves his community as a full-time real estate agent in the Washington metro area. With his busy schedule, Secrest still finds time to volunteer as Senior Vice Commander of National Defense Post #46. He lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife, Stacey.

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $2,500 to the Order of the Buffalo City Guard in honor of Secrest. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, November 1, 2022 – NFM Lending is pleased to honor Specialist 4 Henry Shimberg, USA, as the NFM Salute for November 2022.

Shimberg was born in Kyiv, Ukraine, where he grew up speaking Russian and Ukrainian. “Beautiful city, beautiful subway system, beautiful people,” he said fondly of Kyiv. At 12 years old, Shimberg and his family moved to the United States. Decades later, he will never forget the awe he felt when he arrived in America. “The taste of the air is something I can’t describe,” he recalled. “And the welcome that we received, again, it’s something indescribable. The grocery stores that are full of food where you didn’t have to stand in line was remarkable to a 12-year-old kid.”

When he grew older, Shimberg was unsure of what he wanted to do with his life but knew he wanted to give back to the country that had welcomed him as a child. “I walked into a U.S. Army recruiting office, and said, ‘I speak Russian, what can you guys help me with? I want to serve my country.’ And I went into the U.S. Army.”

He enlisted in 1985, and his multilingual skills made Shimberg an ideal Army Specialist. As a military linguist, he facilitated communications during a historical event: the Bering Bridge Expedition of 1989. The Expedition was a joint endeavor by six American and six Russian explorers to improve relations between the United States and the Soviet Union and to encourage the restoration of free travel between the small Indigenous towns along the Bering Strait. After two months of crossing the ice from Siberia to Alaska, the explorers were nearing the end of their journey. “When they crossed the U.S. border, there was going to be a meeting of U.S. and Russian representatives, and they needed a translator,” explained Shimberg. “The border where the U.S. and Russia meets runs between two islands: one is called Little Diomede, which belongs to the United States and has a Native village, and Big Diomede, which has a barracks of border guards.”

Shimberg and other 6th Light Infantry Division members flew in a Black Hawk helicopter from Nome, Alaska, to receive the party. “Me and this lieutenant colonel from the Alaska National Guard, we flew down to Little Diomede and we were met by our counterparts from the Russian border guards’ colonel and his team, and several news video crews,” he said. “We met on the frozen ice between these two islands. And I got to translate the meeting between these two colonels.” After four years of service, Shimberg left the Army in 1989.

Shimberg lives in McLean, Virginia, with his wife and daughter. He is immensely proud of his family and enjoys spending time with them.

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $2,500 to Wounded Warrior Project in honor of Shimberg. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, October 17, 2022 – NFM Lending is proud to sponsor Athletes Serving Athletes’ 15th Anniversary Bash. The charity gala will take place on Friday, October 21, 2022, in Cockeysville, MD, and will feature a dinner, silent auction, live music, games, and more. ASA also plans to premiere its first feature film at the event, “The Power of We”, produced by NFM TV. The 15th Anniversary Bash will be ASA’s largest fundraiser of the year as they celebrate a milestone year of helping their community. 

Madison Grey, HR director for NFM and ASA Board Member, noted, “Everyone in the NFM family is excited to be a part of ASA’s 15th Anniversary. As a Board Member of ASA, I know all that goes into getting ready for the 90+ mainstream running events that ASA athletes and volunteers participate in each year. It’s a real accomplishment and NFM is here to support the next 15 years of ASA’s journey to bring this experience to as many athletes as possible.”

ASA was founded in 2007 to “elevate the quality of life for individuals with limited mobility by empowering them to train for and participate in mainstream running events.” By creating an accessible space for athletes and their supporters, ASA fosters belonging and dignity within the physically challenged community. In addition, their expansive network of Wingmen volunteers provides moral support and the extra push athletes need to cross the finish line. ASA holds races throughout the year in Maryland, Delaware, and Pennsylvania.

NFM Lending is proud to partner with ASA and promote its vision of inclusivity and connectedness.

NFM Lending is committed to supporting charities and nonprofits that better the communities they serve. NFM is also involved in charitable efforts with St. Jude’s Children’s Research HospitalGary Sinise Foundation, and Greater Baltimore Urban League to name a few.

About NFM Lending
NFM Lending is a national mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, Bluprint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, October 4, 2022 – NFM Lending is pleased to honor Petty Officer Richard Pard, USN, as the NFM Salute for October 2022.

Pard grew up in a large family with seven brothers and two sisters. His father served in WWI, and seven children, including Pard, would eventually follow in his military footsteps. In 1954 at 17 years old, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. “It was the end of the Second World War, and a lot of senior people were leaving the Navy. They were short of people aboard ships, and my brother was serving aboard the USS Bremerton. So I just joined him aboard ship,” he said.

After receiving basic training and specialized training for his role as an Electronics Technician, Pard was stationed on the USS Bremerton. He said of life in the Navy, “We were basically working 24/7 all the time we were at sea. We stood in line at the mess decks to get fed two or three times a day depending on what was going on.” Despite the routine nature of living and working on a ship, Pard visited various countries where he had many unique experiences. “We basically sailed all over the Pacific. On the second cruise we did, we went to the Olympics in Australia,” he recalled. “We did ports like Hawaii and Hong Kong. Our home port in Japan was Yokosuka, and we did Singapore and all over the South Pacific. We sailed a lot between China and Taiwan.” In 1957, Pard left the military after three years of service.

In September 2022, Pard and 23 other Veterans traveled to Washington, D.C., through Honor Flight Network. Honor Flight Network takes Veterans on an all-expenses-paid trip to the nation’s capital so they can visit military memorials and museums. “The first one we visited was the Navy Museum, and that’s the service that I served in. It was exciting. You know, we saw the [memorials] for the Army and Air Force, Korea, and Vietnam.”

Pard lives in San Tan Valley, Arizona. He enjoys playing golf and spending time with his friends from his Veteran’s club.

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $2,500 to the Veteran’s Club at Encanterra in honor of Pard. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.


LINTHICUM, MD, SEPTEMBER 1, 2022 – NFM Lending is pleased to honor Corporal Rick Levine, USA, as the NFM Salute for September 2022.

Levine grew up in southern California. Both of his grandfathers fought in WWII, and he followed their military legacy when he joined the U.S. Army in 1989 at age 23.

Levine completed basic training at Fort Bliss, TX, and he soon deployed to Germany and Honduras as a combat medic. “As a combat medic or soldier medic, our motto is we’re soldiers first and then we’re medics after that. We go through the exact same combat training as any soldier,” he explained. “Before I joined the Army, I was a paramedic. So as I came in, I continued being a paramedic. It was a good skillset to have, and it helped with a lot of soldiers who needed it.” Levine also served as a flight medic for joint missions with the Marines, FBI, and DEA during drug raids in Texas and Colorado. In 1992, the helicopter he was riding in crashed shortly after takeoff en route to Kirtland AFB in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Luckily, he was not seriously injured. With 2 years of foreign service, Levine received eight meritorious service medals and five Army Commendation Medals for saving soldiers and civilian lives during various tours of duty. Levine left the military in 1994 after nearly six years of service.

Following his time in the Army, Levine began a 25-year-long career as a police officer in Browns, Illinois. For Levine, it was a natural extension of his character and core beliefs. “I really enjoyed serving my fellow humans, whether it was from the medical side or on the law enforcement side,” he said. “It’s been more protecting other people. Even when they harm themselves or are harmed by others, you know I did my best to kind of keep them going. And on the law enforcement side, we have laws that we need to uphold, but for me, a lot of it was that human interaction to try and see how I might be able to help change them and change their lives for the positive.”

In September 2021, Levine had his sights set on being selected for a federal position when he discovered he had early stages of pancreatic cancer. Unemployed and living out of a camper, Levine felt lost and hopeless. He was far from his family in Illinois and was close to losing his temporary shelter. Despite these dire circumstances, Levine found a way forward with the help of Code of Vets (COV). Through the organization and its donors, Levine was able to keep a roof over his head through his diagnosis and reunited with his wife during one of his operations. COV co-founders Gretchen Smith and Dr. Cindy Walter walked Levine through applying for V.A. benefits. As a result, he is now receiving full V.A. and Social Security benefits. Using the remaining COV donation, he moved back with his family.

Levine lives in Illinois with his wife. He is moving at a more leisurely pace these days. “I was always a gung-ho, go-go-go kind of guy, whether I was in the military or law enforcement,” said Levine. “This diagnosis, it’s really caused me to put a pause on that aspect of my life. I look at my family—I could have done more with my family, but now I have the time to do it. So now I’m trying to spend more time with my kids, my grandkids as much as I can.”

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $2,500 to Levine through Code of Vets to assist in his treatment and recovery. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, August 1, 2022— NFM Lending is pleased to honor Corporal Jason Walters, USMC, as the NFM Salute for August 2022.

Walters was raised by his father, an Army Veteran with the 101st Airborne Division during the Vietnam War. His father’s gentle strength inspired him to join the military, and he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1994. 

Walters was first assigned to Company B at Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C., colloquially called “8th and I”. As the oldest active post in the Marines, it encompasses the Corps’ ceremonial units, including the U.S. Marine Band and U.S. Marine Drum and Bugle Corps. As a member of Company B, Walters took part in escorting dignitaries at the White House, marching in parades, and presiding over funerals at Arlington National Cemetery. Though Walters witnessed numerous military funerals during his service, each was solemn. “You can’t help but live in the gravity of what sacrifices were made, and that’s why it was such an honor to serve at the Marine Barracks,” he said. “We took this very personally and represented them and the Marine Corps to the highest level.”

Walters then joined Company A at Marine Barracks and trained to become part of the Silent Drill Platoon. For four and a half months, Walters practiced 14 hours every day in preparation to become one of 24 elite Silent Drill members. After he passed his training, he participated in drill demonstrations at sporting and other public events around the country and the world. In 1998, Walters left the Marines.

After leaving the military, Walters used his GI Bill to earn his bachelor’s degree from Radford University, graduating in 2002. In 2016, he found himself floundering: he was unemployed and homeless. “I remember laying in the back of the car at night, thinking about the day that I wasn’t there, the promises I’d make to myself, and what I was going to do and what I wasn’t going to do, and how I was never going to be out of the fight,” he recalled. Walters was given a chance to turn his situation around when his friend offered him a job in telecommunications. The opportunity changed his life, and in 2019, he took all the industry knowledge and passion he had developed to co-find a business of his own: Cloud Warriors

Cloud Warriors is a technology consulting firm that trains and hires Veterans in transition. For three months, Veterans can gain valuable industry experience and earn their certifications, increasing their skill set for the civilian job market. Walters knows firsthand how difficult it can be for Veterans to find employment after service and wants to be a lifeline for those struggling. “There’s so many homeless Veterans, and it’s just because nobody gave them a chance.”

Walters lives in Richmond, VA, with his family.

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $2,500 to Shields and Stripes in honor of Walters. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, July 1, 2022— NFM Lending is pleased to honor Sergeant First Class Joe Dulmage, USA, as the NFM Salute for July 2022.

Dulmage grew up around Veterans—his grandfather, uncle, and great uncle all served in the military. Hearing the stories of their service and heroism planted the seed that led him to join the U.S. Army in 1999. 

Dulmage initially joined the military, intending to work in communications. However, in 2001, he applied to become a member of the U.S. Army Special Forces, the elite Green Berets. For him, the Green Berets offered a more challenging, competitive, team-driven, and liberating environment than what was standard in the Army. Dulmage was accepted into the program and underwent rigorous training over a 2-year period. Because Special Forces operate with unconventional warfare, it was essential for Dulmage and his team to prepare for any situation at any time.

“The selection process was roughly a month, and it’s really physical,” he described. “They do different tasks that you have to navigate through, but essentially after that month-long period, you get selected to join. The training program for me in the pipeline was right around 2 years, and that includes collective group training, so you’re learning your basic tactics. Once you pass that, you go into the individualized trainings.” Dulmage completed medical training for his role as a combat medic. 

In his career, Dulmage has deployed multiple times to South America and the Middle East. He has participated in a range of special operations missions worldwide. He was awarded the Purple Heart after sustaining shrapnel injuries from a mortar attack on his camp while in the Middle East. 

With 23 years of service under his belt, Dulmage is preparing to retire soon. He already has career plans for his post-military life, including becoming a certified physician assistant and self-defense teacher. The leadership abilities he gained while in the Special Forces will undoubtedly benefit him as he transitions into civilian life. “I learned a lot about creating a culture for a team,” Dulmage reflected. “So just kind of being on the same operating picture, trying to get all the guys to buy into the same essential goals that we all have. Teams have their own personalities, and it’s important to maintain that culture and build it.”

Dulmage lives in Pinehurst, NC, with his wife, Karen, and their children.

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are chosen from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $1,250 to Sandhills Habitat for Humanity and the Rick Herrema Foundation in honor of Dulmage. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 48 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, Elevate Home Loans, and Element Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, May 30, 2022— NFM Lending is pleased to honor Staff Sergeant Ryan Garrison (Ret.), USAF, as the NFM Salute for June 2022.

Garrison grew up in Princeton, Indiana. With six of his relatives having served in the military, it was only natural that he would follow the same path. As a college student, Garrison worked towards a degree in Sports Medicine when 9/11 happened. “I knew all bets were off, and I had to do what I was supposed to do, which was enlist,” he remembers. So he dropped out of college and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. 

He was stationed at Travis Air Base in California and later deployed to Pakistan in 2002 and Iraq in 2006. As an Air Transportation Specialist, Garrison managed the logistics of all air transport activities. One day while awaiting a shipment in Kirkuk, Iraq, Garrison’s team was attacked by a local sheepherder acting on behalf of the insurgents. A rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) hit a transport vehicle, and the force of the impact threw Garrison backward, fracturing two of his spinal discs. Though he did not lose his life or the ability to walk, his injuries left him with lasting chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). 

After receiving treatment and returning stateside, Garrison was assigned to Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, where he performed special airlift operations. He escorted important dignitaries on and off their flights on Air Force One and Two, including Presidents George W. Bush and Barrack Obama. In 2016, Garrison medically retired from the Air Force after almost 15 years of service.

Garrison finished fighting on the battlefield, but now he had to contend with the intense pain and fear he felt within himself. “There was always that part in the back of my head I was thinking there was somebody out there, ready to just fire another rocket at us,” he said. “That constant thought in the back of my head, it would show up in anxiety. At night, I would have dreams of being over there. “

Garrison’s life changed for the better in 2016 when he partnered with a service dog named Luke. “I always say that he saved my life because, with him, he always alerts me to anxiety cues,” he said. “My knees bounce, my hands jiggle, he comes up and just lets me know that I’m getting ready to have one. He wakes me up from dreams, so with my therapy dog, I took a lot less medication, and nowadays, my dreams are once a month. My anxiety attacks are maybe once a week, if that.” Not only was Luke a turning point for Garrison’s mental health, but it was also an eye-opening experience for how nontraditional treatments can benefit Veterans. 

In 2018, Garrison founded his own nonprofit, Valor Therapeutics. With his wife Julie, a certified music therapist, he teaches active service members, military Veterans, and first responders to channel their complex emotions through the arts. Once a week for eight weeks, his team leads a small group of “Defenders” through visual arts, music, and yoga. These activities allow participants to understand their feelings in a way talking alone cannot. Garrison likes to call what they practice “complementary therapies” because their holistic approach can enhance traditional treatments that Veterans may also be seeking. “You can only go so far by talking, and around here, it’s very hard to find a therapist,” he said. “Mental health is so important to me and all the Veterans I know that are fighting it.” 

Garrison lives in Dayton, OH, with his wife Julie, their children, and his service dog, Luke. Garrison was nominated by the NFM Salute for December 2021, Jessica Astorga.

The NFM Salute is an initiative in which one military member or Veteran is honored as the “Salute of the Month.” Salutes are selected from nominations on the NFM Salute website, www.nfmsalute.com. The “Salute of the Month” is featured on the website with a biography and information about their service. NFM Lending will donate to a nonprofit in the Salute’s name. NFM Lending is proud to present $2,500 to Valor Therapeutics in honor of Garrison. NFM looks forward to the opportunity to continue to honor military service members and Veterans through the NFM Salute initiative.

About NFM Lending

NFM Lending is a mortgage lending company currently licensed in 47 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, BluPrint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, and Elevate Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.

LINTHICUM, MD, May 26, 2022 – NFM Lending is proud to sponsor the ASA Open 2022, benefiting Athletes Serving Athletes (ASA). The charity golf tournament will take place on Monday, June 6, 2022, in Marriotsville, MD. NFM is sponsoring this event for the second straight year.

“NFM is honored to sponsor and participate in the second annual ASA Open golf tournament that supports the organization’s invaluable Wingman program,” said NFM HR Director and ASA Board Member Madison Grey. “Without ASA’s Wingmen, the athletes they serve would not be able to cross the finish line. So, we are looking forward to a glorious day of camaraderie, raising funds for a great cause, and of course, some straight shots on the golf course.”

ASA’s mission is to “elevate the quality of life for individuals with limited mobility by empowering them to train for and participate in mainstream running events.” By creating an accessible space for athletes and their supporters, ASA fosters belonging and dignity within the physically challenged community. In addition, their expansive network of Wingmen volunteers provides moral support, and the extra push athletes need to cross the finish line. ASA holds races throughout the year in Maryland, Delaware, and Pennsylvania.

NFM Lending is proud to partner with ASA and promote its vision of inclusivity and connectedness.

NFM Lending is committed to supporting charities and nonprofits that better the communities they serve. NFM is also involved in charitable efforts with St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, Gary Sinise Foundation, and Greater Baltimore Urban League to name a few.

About NFM Lending
NFM Lending is a national mortgage lending company currently licensed in 47 states and the District of Columbia. The company was founded in Baltimore, Maryland in 1998. NFM Lending and its family of companies includes Main Street Home Loans, Bluprint Home Loans, Freedmont Mortgage Group, and Elevate Home Loans. They attribute their success in the mortgage industry to their steadfast commitment to customers and the community. For more information about NFM Lending, visit www.nfmlending.com, like our Facebook page, or follow us on Instagram.