Using Military Experience to Serve Resident Communities

Chef Shawn McGregor receiving Industry Partner Of The Year from the Florida Senior Living Association (Left), and a photo from his service in the US Navy (Right).

In 2021, Healthcare Services Group (HCSG) sat down with multiple team members to discuss their experience in the military and how it translated to their professional careers. Among the team members were Shawn McGregor and Austin Alverson, who shared their military experiences and what brought them to their role at HCSG.

Shawn McGregor, Area Executive Chef

Chef Shawn, the Area Executive Chef for the Southeast region, shared his experience in the United States Submarine Force. He spent his first ten years on sea duty and completed two trips around the world. “I was a Hospitality Specialist on ships for the Navy. Hospitality Specialists complete various tasks across numerous areas, ranging from Military Hospitals to the Pentagon, all the way up to the White House. It’s life-changing.”

He enjoyed every minute of what he did in the military. When it was time to retire, he felt his service prepared him for what was ahead. “Transitioning to civilian life and work from the Navy is a little different – you become a leader and mentor in your military roles, which translates to roles afterward.” Reflecting on the last decade with HCSG, he added, “Standing alongside Cooks who want to be Chefs, who want to be mentored, and who want to grow in the business – that’s why I do what I do. Being in the military prepared me for that.”

Austin Alverson, Vice President of Operations

Austin joined the Marine Corps on a whim. He was on a track scholarship in college but didn’t enjoy attending class, so he dropped out. Austin went to a recruiting office on a Sunday, and the only person there was the Marine Corps recruiter. He signed up that day and did not tell a single person. The following week, he was on a plane heading to South Carolina for boot camp.

Photo of Austin Alverson.
Austin Alverson

After leaving the Marine Corps, Austin managed restaurants for a decade before joining HCSG in 2014. He was looking for better structure and time management because working in a restaurant meant working 80 hours a week to be successful. Austin’s journey at HCSG had a fast start. “The growth was crazy. At the time, my area in Ohio didn’t have many Dietary clients. It was exciting when we started expanding. I first ran one building, then three, then nine, then I got up to sixteen as a District Manager,” said Austin. He continued, “When the Director of Operations position came up in another area, it was refreshing that the company would relocate and help me learn a new position with the company.”

Now a Vice President of Operations, Alverson enjoys building his teams and feels lucky to have Managers who are driven and support one another like family. “I treat this company more like a family. A lot of people I work with have become very close friends. Having HCSG as a family is something you can look forward to and grow with — like a platoon or regiment.” Austin also uses leadership principles drawn from military life, focusing on team accountability, prioritization, communication, and execution to strengthen workplace and team leadership.

Shawn McGregor and Austin Alverson have unique stories and perspectives demonstrating the skills and qualities that veterans bring to the workplace. Their stories highlight the importance of mentorship, leadership, and team building, essential attributes in both the military and civilian worlds.

HCSG takes pride in offering flexible, professional paths for military members, veterans, and their families to succeed. We recognize and support these individuals’ contributions to our organization and the communities we serve.

Learn more about how we stand with our military workforce by visiting and explore how you can use your military experience to serve resident communities across the country at HCSG.Careers

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