“Vanquishing The Invisible”
An Independent Portrait Project  by James R Morrison and J Mara Morrison
Vanquishing The Invisible will be displayed at the California State Fair during Military and
Veteran Appreciation Day, July 18th continuing on July 19th in the Fine Arts Building 7
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Thank you for your interest in “Vanquishing the Invisible”. From the beginning, you recognized the value and importance of bringing these portraits and stories to the public. We truly appreciate your support and we look forward to seeing you at a future event.
Jaclyn Kirkwood
U.S. Marine (Retired)
My name is Jaclyn Kirkwood. I grew up in Southern Illinois on the outskirts of St. Louis, Missouri. When I graduated from high school in 1997, I was seventeen. My mother offered to pay for college, but instead, I decided to join the United States Marine Corps. At the time I wasn’t sure why I wanted to go to school and I felt it was time for me to be on my own. Joining the military provided the opportunity for stable pay, travel and adventure, and the challenge I was looking for. I went to boot camp in 1997. My Military Occupational Specialty was Motor-Transportation. While serving I was stationed in Okinawa, Japan; Quantico, Virginia; Miramar, California; Kuwait and Iraq during the invasion of Iraq in 2003; St. Louis, Missouri; Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom; Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri; and Sacramento, California. I retired in June of 2015. While serving, I earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business and a Master of Art in Management and Leadership.
After retiring I worked at a local lobbying firm for six months but I felt the need to serve the community more. In August 2015, I began working at The Children’s Receiving Home of Sacramento. I absolutely loved being able to help the community serve At-Risk Youth. I’ve been blessed with being able to participate in Rotary, FBI Citizens Academy, 2017 Leadership Sacramento Class (Metro Chamber), and the Women Veterans Alliance. My current focus is serving as President of Women Veterans Giving, a non-profit supporting women veteran entrepreneurs. I am currently the Vice President of Operations at Goodwin-Cole Company in Sacramento.
In 2016, I was fortunate to be selected for the Heroes to Heroes Journey to Israel. The organization gives American disabled Veterans the experience of a lifetime and is designed to educate, motivate, stimulate discussion and bonding with peers and be a springboard for emotional and spiritual healing both during and after the experience. We spent ten days in Israel on a life-changing trip. I connected with American and Israeli female soldiers and reconfirmed my life to Jesus in the Jordan River.
My transition out of the military hasn’t been easy but I wouldn’t take a day back of the time I served. It has made me who I am today and for that I am thankful.
We received the highest praise on the surveys and in personal comments affirming this project touches viewers in a deep and profound way. Their use of words like, “powerful”, “enlightening”, “passionate”, “thought-provoking”, and (we really liked this one) “take it national” reinforces our belief in this critically important exhibit.
However, “Vanquishing the Invisible” cannot continue - or grow - its outreach without your support. We would be honored if you would take a moment to help fund this project.
There’s so much more we can accomplish if we do it together. Your support will help others attend future exhibits and continue the outreach to new audiences.
Thanks to you, these stories and portraits are possible.

If you would like to honor Women Veterans and help educate future generations on the legacy of women in the military, please DONATE

“Women Veterans are often assumed to be spouses of a veteran. We are on a mission to change that assumption. Working together, we can not only change perceptions but bring to light the vast achievements and contributions our women veterans make every day. Impacting a woman veteran’s life not only positively changes her life, but also her family’s and the community in which she lives.”         Melissa Washington, Founder of Women Veterans Alliance
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