David Ortiz is an advocate and public speaker who excels at developing, framing, and delivering an effective message. He raised funds upwards of $1.2 million in varying roles: as a supporting speaker, keynote speaker, and supervisor of a fundraising team for Craig Hospital. His ability to adapt and thrive in any situation while under pressure has been proven in many ways: accumulating 600 hours of combat flight time as an OH58D(r) pilot, managing accountability of over $40 million USD of equipment, advocating for better care of wounded soldiers and veterans, helping rebuild the lives of those who relocated to Houston after Hurricane Katrina, and rebuilding his own life after suffering a spinal cord injury from a helicopter crash while serving in Afghanistan. David Ortiz also served as lead lobbyist and legislative liaison working directly with state legislators in Denver for the United Veterans Committee of Colorado (UVC). David’s lobbying in the 71st General Assembly of Colorado (Jan 2017 – May 2017) was one of the most successful legislative session for the UVC, which ushered in an overall success rate of 91% on bills which the UVC held a position. He also assisted in lobbying for an additional $15.3 million in housing benefits for those who suffer from substance abuse issues (which will undoubtedly affect, among others, our brothers and sisters in arms who have been dishonorably discharged due to mental health issues), $300,000 in additional funding for County Veterans Service Officers, roughly $475,000 for strengthening veterans courts; and $59,000 for the beginning of state funded maintenance of Homelake Veterans Cemetery in the San Luis Valley. All of these additions were written into the finalized 2018 Colorado state budget. David has currently taken on the role of Program Director and Jr Vice Commander for VFW Post 1. VFW Post 1’s programs include Peer2Peer, Veterans Arts Council (veterans have sold over $14,000.00 of their art work in 2017), Healing Warriors (which offers acupuncture and other alternative therapies at no cost to participating veterans), and the Legislative Advocacy Committee.
David received a B.A. joint major in International Studies and Business Administration at the University of Saint Thomas, where he graduated with honors. However, his education was about more than book learning. He spent time studying abroad in Mexico and Chile, while also spending a summer teaching algebra and chemistry to high school students in Mbeya, Tanzania.
David currently resides in Littleton, Colorado, where he continues to be an active force in the veteran community and enjoys the adaptive sports programs that only the state of Colorado can offer. His experience with state government, fundraising, and leading a team serve him well in his roles as Program Director and Jr Vice Commander for VFW Post 1. His tenacity, work ethic, and skill with the written and spoken word enhance any event, organization, or cause for which he advocates and works.