Building a sustaianble future with veteran leadership.
The Mission and Inspiration
The Veterans Green Bus is a project of United Peace Relief.. Created to provide veterans training in sustainable energy solutions for community service projects and disaster response.
Gordon Soderberg (Founder)
Growing up in rural Northern California, Gordon learned the values of hard work, creativity and self sufficiency. While still in high school, he was holding down a construction job, taking college level art classes and volunteering for community service projects. A veteran of the US Navy, Gordon honorably served 6 years as a Seaman, Corpsman and Surgical Technician. Gordon spent most of his military service training to set up field hospitals and operating rooms in the middle east and escorting oil tankers though the Persian Gulf. While there, he saw the vast amounts of military assets required. Over the next 25 years he watched the costs in both American blood and treasure increase to secure a unsustainable resource... This convinced him that working on alternative energy and veteran transition support was the best use of his time and training..
How he got here....
During the 1990s after working 5 years as a civilian trauma surgical technician in the Bay Area and taking night classes in computer graphic design and video production, Gordon and his brother, Andrew Soderberg, the former Quicktime Evangelist for Apple Computer Inc, started a multimedia production company. Apple Computer's marketing department was their chief client. Gordon's job was to design the graphics for interactive presentations including user interfaces to promote Apple Computer's new product lines and permanent installations.
At the turn of the century Gordon was teaching artists how to create and market their work using the Internet and consulting with rural technology firms and cultural institutions. A founding board member of the Redwood Technology Consortium, they successfully advocated for expanded Internet access for rural communities in Northern California. He spent his leisure time learning how to make biodiesel and organizing volunteer efforts on two historical building preservation projects at The Eureka Theater and Bless My Soul Cafe in Eureka, California,
By 2005, Gordon combined his interests in veteran community service, digital communications, and alternative energy by building a biodiesel powered bus with satellite internet access. Veterans For Peace goals for the bus was to promote member veteran's alternatives to war and the real price of unsustainable resources. This bus was used to provide emergency power for medical equipment, lights and Internet communications after Hurricane Katrina for a red cross shelter for the first to weeks Common Ground Medical Clinic and United Peace Relief's first volunteer camps used the bus to design their camp's basic communications capabilities. When the bus returned to California Gordon remained in Louisiana building a biodiesel plant to run trucks, tractors, bobcats, geothermal drills, and generators for neighborhood preservation, green home reconstruction and community garden projects. His fuel was used to save the lower ninth ward homeowners from being fined for not cutting the over growth. Later the fuel was used to clear the lots for the Make It Right Project Green Construction. The bio diesel plant is now being used by Louisiana Technical College to teach local youth how to make fuel from recycle cooking oil.
Head for the hills....
Gordon now lives in Denver Colorado and works for Veterans Green Jobs, a non profit he helped start in 2009. He is responsible for maintaining a fleet of 31 vehicles and equipment used for weatherization services in communities throughout the Denver and Jefferson County.
His off time is now spent collaborating with partnering organizations to design the next generation of veterans green buses. The Veterans Green Bus Project is not just sustainable transportation for a sustainable message it is the vehicle to document sustainable destinations along the way and the work it takes to get there.
Disaster Response Plan
The Five things are needed after a natural disaster; sustainable communications; sustainable power; tools; organized people with experience and hot food; The veterans green bus will be able to provide all five with the capacity to expand a veteran volunteer response effort through the network of veteran and community service organizations it works with across the country on a day to day basis,
Member veterans who have trained together to operate the bus, fueling systems and it's support functions.
Fuels, collection, treatment, storage and uses
Satellite communications and digital documentation techniques
Kitchen/ Camp Support
Recruit Trades members
Doctor, ER/OR Nurse, EMT, Fire dept, Plumber Electrician, Framer, Equipment Operator, Foundation and Commercial and Residential Building Contractors.