Mr. Carpenter was born in November 1964 and raised in New London, CT. He joined the U.S. Army in 1984 and served in Operation Desert Shield, Operation Desert Storm and Somalia as a Medic. In 1994, Mr. Carpenter was honorably discharged from the Army in Washington, DC and decided to stay in the area. He worked as a group home counselor, a software instructor, a sales representative for Hewlett Packard and as a Benefits Assistant at Georgetown University. Mr. Carpenter began using the services of the VA Medical Center in November 1999. He is presently a volunteer working in the Outpatient Laboratory. Mr. Carpenter has been a strong voice for VA health care and an advocate for disabled Veterans. Because of his knowledge of the VA system and My HealtheVet, in particular, he is frequently a Veteran spokesperson encouraging other Veterans to access VA health care.