V Solutions Consulting
“I was given a chance when I came to a new country and I want to help give other people a chance to become better. I want to be that person who inspires others to create opportunities.”
Nola Veazie grew up in Panama with the belief that she could do anything she set her mind to. Nola is an veteran of the US Air Force, where she discovered a psychology program that appealed to her. She got her master’s degree in counseling and eventually received her PhD in psychology. She began doing marriage and family therapy, as well as individual therapy.
After 20 years of military service, Nola retired from the Air Force in 2002. Initially, she worked as a director for a drug and alcohol nonprofit that provided a residential program for mothers; however, Nola also continued to work with children in group homes and to train prison staff. Over the years, Nola developed an offering of continuing education units (CEUs). Drug and alcohol counselors have to take a certain number of CEUs every two years in order to maintain their certification. Nola officially launched V-Solutions Consulting in 2016. She subsequently got a State contract through The Department of Corrections to provide training, consulting, and staff development in five California prisons. That number has since grown to 23 prisons across the state.
Nola contracts doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows, therapists, and other drug and alcohol counselors to be trainers. In fact, one of her contractors previously spent time in prison. As such, in addition to providing training to staff, V-Solutions also trains long-term prisoners who’ve received their drug and alcohol certifications while in prison. Nola calls them “peer mentors.”
In 2016, Nola was selected to be a part of Inner City Capital Connections (ICCC), a tuition-free executive leadership training program designed by the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) to help business owners in under-resourced communities to build capacity for sustainable growth. The training was hosted in Los Angeles, and that’s where Nola was connected with our team at Pacific Community Ventures. “I have a great mentor at PCV who listens and gives me ideas that I was able to use to grow,” Nola said. “Before, I was fulfilling these contracts, but I didn’t see myself growing outside of what I knew and outside of my comfort zone.”
Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating (she lost her sister to the virus), it’s also provided Nola an opportunity to reach a wider audience. This year, Nola got V-Solutions certified in the State of New York to provide drug and alcohol CEUs, and she’s looking for other opportunities outside of California to expand V-Solutions’ work. “I was given a chance when I came to a new country,” Nola said, “and I want to help give other people a chance to become better. I want to be that person who inspires others to create opportunities.”