Below are members of the RIServes team who help serve the veterans of Rhode Island.
On February 17, 2016, Governor Gina Raimondo appointed Kasim J. Yarn to the first Director of Veterans Affairs for the State of Rhode Island. Kasim is an active-duty naval officer who retired May 16, 2016, after 20 years of faithful service to our nation and joined the Raimondo administration the following day. While from Jackson, Mississippi, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy the day after graduating high school. His first duty station was in South Weymouth, Massachusetts, a time that began Kasim’s lifelong love affair with New England. While stationed at Naval Station Newport in 1995, the Navy selected Kasim to attend college and become an officer. That same year, he met his future wife, Rosaria, a native of Italy who grew up in Westerly, Rhode Island. Kasim also received his commission as a naval officer that year and was deployed in the Mediterranean and Persian Gulf area of operations. After his assignments at sea, Kasim became an instructor at the Surface Warfare Officers School at Naval Station Newport in 2004. While in Newport, Kasim earned a Master’s Degree in National Strategic Studies at the U.S. Naval War College in 2006. Beginning in July 2007, Kasim served on several deployments with the Navy’s Sixth and Fifth Fleets in increasing roles of responsibility and returned home to Rhode Island in July 2013 to become a faculty member at the Naval War College.
Strategic Planning, Policy, & Communications Administrator
Michael Jolin joined the Rhode Island Office of Veterans Affairs in 2015 after serving as the public information officer and legislative liaison for the Department of Human Services. He is responsible for media relations, legislative affairs, and outreach initiatives. Mike plays a critical role in crafting the strategic messaging and building the external partnerships for the Office of Veterans Affairs. An 11-year veteran of the Army, Mike serves as a major in the Rhode Island National Guard. He deployed to Afghanistan with the 43rd Military Police Brigade in 2011-2012. Following his deployment, he had the honor of serving on the staff of U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, assisting veterans and their families with getting the benefits they earned. Earlier in his career, Mike worked as a tax manager for Ernst & Young in Chicago, and later represented clients at the law firm of Tillinghast Licht in Providence. He then joined the Rhode Island Department of Attorney in 2002, litigating cases on behalf of the State of Rhode Island, including two reported decision before the Rhode Island Supreme Court (Hanley v. State, 837 A.2d 707 (R.I. 2003) and Henshaw v. Doherty, 881 A.2d 909 (R.I. 2005)). Mike also served as Deputy Chief of Legal Services for the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation from 2005 to 2009.
David DosReis joined us from the Providence VA Medical Center, where he served as the Patient Advocate for the past eight years. In that role, he worked with veterans to get the care they needed and their concerns addressed. David enlisted in the Massachusetts Army National Guard a month after high school graduation and was at basic training when we were attacked on 9/11. He served as a combat medic and deployed to Iraq in 2004/2005, where was awarded the Combat Medical Badge for his rendering of care to wounded soldiers and civilians while under fire. Following his honorable discharge from the Army, David began his career helping his fellow veterans and earned his bachelor’s in communications from Bridgewater State University while working at the VA full-time. He is married with seven children and lives in Riverside.
David Rothermel served as Operation Stand Down’s employment and training programs coordinator for the past three years before joining the Rhode Island Office of Veterans Affairs. A Warwick native, he enlisted in the Marine Corps after graduating from Toll Gate High School. During his time with the Marines, he served on three deployments: two to Iraq and one to Afghanistan. After transitioning out of the military, David graduated from CCRI with high honors and is finishing up his bachelor’s degree at Providence College. At CCRI, he helped establish the school’s Student Veterans Organization chapter and completed a one-year fellowship with The Mission Continues, a nonprofit of veterans helping improve the community. David currently resides in Johnston, Rhode Island with his fiancé, Dee DeQuattro, and their two dogs. He enjoys volunteering, watching the Patriots, and camping.