At Spartan Alliance, an Independence Corps Initiative we are driven by a single goal; to do our part in making the world a better place for our severely injured, ill Veterans and their families. Our decision making process is formed by our teams involvement with Veterans for a number of years.. We strive to build productive relationships and make a positive impact
President of Independence Corps
Gary Lawson, J.D., LL.M., Co-Founder of the Independence Corps (formerly known as America’s Huey 091 Foundation), has been a practicing lawyer for 42 years. He is licensed in New York and Texas and is admitted to practice before the 5th Cir. United States Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court.
Mr. Lawson has established and served both as legal counsel and on the boards of nonprofits including Medisend International, Snowball Express, FIRST IN Texas, Capt. Hope’s Kids and others.
In 2013 the Secretary of the Army’s ordered Gary Lawson’s induction as an honorary member of the 160th Special Aviation Army Regiment (“SOAR”) at Ft Campbell KY in recognition of his decade long contribution to the welfare of Members of the United States Military including disabled former service members and his 7 years of service on the Board (1 as Vice-Chair and 2 as Chairman) of Snowball Express, a 501(c)(3) organization providing help for the children of U.S. military killed while serving our Great Nation after 9/11.
Gary’s writing has been cited in the United States Court of Appeals decision of Morse v. Stanley, 732 F.2d 1139 (2nd Cir. 1984). Mr. Lawson was also an active participant in representing the interests of public pension funds during the 1997 development of the Uniform Management of Public Employee Retirement Systems Act promulgated by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. Mr. Lawson served on the IRS Employee Plans and Exempt Organization Dallas Key District Oversight Committee. Mr. Lawson is a member of both the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys and a Past President of the Texas Association of Public Pension Attorneys. Gary has twice briefed cases before the United States Supreme Court winning favorable decisions for both clients.
Mr. Lawson has served as an expert witness before the United States Congress as well as in several malpractice and fiduciary breach cases, and successful prosecution a $200M breach of fiduciary duty case. . Recently, Gary spoke at the annual National Association of State Retirement Administrators.
Mr. Lawson represents the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System, the El Paso Firemen and Policemen’s Pension Fund, the Employee Retirement Fund of the City of Dallas, the Houston Police Officers Retirement Fund, the City of Irving Supplemental Retirement Fund and the Louisiana State Auditors’ Office on pension and in some cases investment and litigation matters.
When not working for our veterans or his clients Gary enjoys cycling with his lovely wife and learning how to fly. The Lawsons have one son, a computer engineer who earlier had interned at the Dallas Veterans Hospital and DEKA Research.
Steven "Luker" Danyluk
Co-President Of Independence Corps
Lt Col. Steve “Luker” Danyluk (USMC, Ret), currently an international airline pilot, first had two ground combat tours, his last being with a twenty-eight Marine Reserve Detachment based out of West Palm Beach, FL.
Steve is Co-President of the Veterans Independence Corps, a newly created position established to work hand in hand with the Chairman, providing leadership in the delivery of the best and most advanced treatment and equipment for those who have served in the U.S. Military and suffered disabling injuries in or as a direct result of that service.
Steve enlisted in the Army under the Delayed Entry Program in 1980, two months after his seventeenth birthday and served for three years as a combat medic in the 82nd Airborne. Following a combat deployment during Operation Enduring Freedom to Grenada, he left active service to pursue a formal education and graduated in 1988 with a degree in Humanities from the University of California, Berkeley. While attending college, Mr. Danyluk completed the Marine Corps Officer Candidate School and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in May of 1988. His foreign deployments include but are not limited to Japan, Korea, Australia, Guam, Israel, Italy, Spain and Egypt. In 2004 he served as the Operations Officer for 4th ANGLICO and participated in ground combat actions in Iraq.
Steve’s last active tour was working wounded issued in Washington DC. In 2007, Steve founded the Independence Fund, long a 100% volunteer 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to providing the tools, therapies and guidance to those severely injured veterans that they were not then receiving. Under Steve’s leadership, the IF successfully raised $40million and provided more than 1000 high tech all terrain wheel chairs to veterans with severe mobility disabilities.
Today Luker continues to fly internationally for the world’s largest airline and devotes his spare time to his family and to our nation’s wounded veterans.
Steve is married to the former Valerie Canfield, herself a current active duty Lt Col in the Marine Corps. They have two fine children.
Theresa Botts brings many years of experience to the Case Director position.
She was formerly the Care Director with another large non profit, and spent 24 years in private business sector.
She has built and developed a comprehensive application process to include fair screening and eligibility criteria, ensuring that veterans with severe mobility issues are served according to their needs.
Botts has extensive experience working with call centers, dealing with peers and managers. This includes working one on one with vendors that provide mobility devices, such as recumbent’s, hand cycles, road bikes, all terrain chairs, and trailers. Handling the process of these devices for a previous non profit, amounting in more than a million dollars in devices for Veterans.
All the while, fostering relationships and building a network of providers to ensure that the needs of Veterans were being met cost effectively.
Botts is the full time caregiver to her severely injured Veteran spouse. Living in rural Tennessee, She works one on one with the VA system to make certain that he receives best possible care for his injuries. This first hand, daily experience makes her remarkably effective in understanding the needs of our nations wounded.
Her connections in the Veteran/Caregiver community makes her a valued asset to our organization.