Tawanda “Tee” Hanible

A Marine Way of Life

It was after a successful tour on recruiting that GySgt Tee Hanible found her calling of working with and empowering youth. Shortly after receiving orders to transfer to Quantico, Virginia she founded the organization Operation Heroes Connect, an organization that partners service members and veterans as full time mentors for at-risk youth.



In February 2012, Mrs. Hanible was chosen to represent the state of Illinois at a dinner by the White house honoring Iraq veterans. If you remember, this is the very same Marine that was featured in Newsweek Magazine in 2012 for their “Heroes Edition” and later during their “Urge to Serve” panel for the Newsweek Heroes Summit hosted in Washington, DC which spotlighted her efforts in and out of uniform. Her organization Operation Heroes Connect has been awarded The Black Celebrity Giving’s 2013 Rising Star Award and the Action in Community Through Service (ACTS) 2013 Volunteer of the Year Award. In 2013 Mrs. Hanible founded Finding Your Vision Expo, a female empowerment expo that assists women find their purpose. The expo provides a forum for female entrepreneurs to become educated in the world of business and help empower them to step out on their own. This year Finding Your Vision Expo held its first ever expo hosted by celebrity, Grammy nominated R&B singer Syleena Johnson.



Not only does GySgt Hanible run these two organizations while on active duty, she is also an avid member of the Woman Marine Association and the Vice President of her local chapter, VA-1 (located in Northern Virginia).



Today GySgt Hanible fondly known as Tee is one of the finalist for the 2014 Ms Veteran America competition. Ms. Veteran America is indeed a one of a kind Competition which began in 2012. Founder and CEO Jaspen Boothe, an Army Veteran, Jasper created the Ms. Veteran America competition to showcase the “Woman Beyond the Uniform”. The Ms. Veteran America competition is held in the United States and is open to all Women who are currently serving, or have served honorably in one of the 5 branches of the United States Military.

Most importantly this competition is also used to raise awareness for the organization Final Salute Inc. an organization also founded by Capt Jaspen Boothe. While serving her country during hurricane Katrina, Jas, a single mother, found herself homeless with no adequate resources. Jas vowed then that she would never have another female veteran face the adversity that she had to endure. In 2010 she founded Final Salute Inc and their main mission is to Providing provide safe and suitable housing for homeless female veterans. All proceeds from the event will aid in continuing to provide homes for homeless female Veterans and their children. Final Salute currently has 3 homes that provide housing to our women veterans, they are located in VA, West Virginia, and Ohio. We caught up to Tee, and asked her what was one of the reasons she chose to participate in the Ms Veteran America competition this year. “Probably the biggest reason I chose to run in the Ms Veteran America competition this year was because I wanted to help be a voice to this great cause!”

TeeWhen I joined the Corps, one of the benefits that drew me was that pride of belonging. Knowing that my brother and sister to the left or right of me would always have my back continues to give me pride and the strength I need to continue going, to continue my mission. No veteran whose served their country should be homeless. I want them to know that I have their back, that We have their back, and they are not forgotten!” You can have their back too by donating today!

Gunnery Sergeant Tee Hanible is also the 2013 recipient of the Marine Corps’ Maj McClung Leadership Award and the USO’s 2013 C. Haskell Small Award for Volunteer Service across the DOD. GySgt Tee Hanible currently works at Quantico, VA as an Operations Chief in charge of her battalion’s training and development mission as well assisting with one of the Marine Corps biggest public relation event, The Marine Corps Marathon.



GySgt Tee Hanible resides in Fredericksburg, VA with husband Donald C. Hanible Jr. of Orlando FL. They have been married 7 years and have four children Destiny 16, Dayvon 14, D’Anthony 13 and Jasmine 10.