Board of Directors
Colonel Paddy Gough
Retired USMC Colonel Patrick “Paddy” Gough is the Chief Operating Officer for PKL Services, Inc. This leading global aerospace service company provides innovative maintenance, training, logistics, and leadership solutions to military and commercial customers worldwide. Prior to joining PKL, Paddy completed six years as the Executive Director of Human Resources and Organizational Development for Orange County Transportation Authority. Paddy comes from a distinguished 30-year career with the U.S. Marine Corps, serving as the Commanding Officer of Marine Aircraft Group 39, the Deputy Commander of Marine Corps Installations-West, Commanding Officer of Marine Light/Attack Helicopter Squadron 169, and the Operations Officer for both Third Marine Aircraft Wing and First Marine Expeditionary Force, in peacetime and in combat. Paddy has been awarded the Legion of Merit with two Gold Stars, the Bronze Star, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal with Gold Star, the Air Medal with the Numeral 2, the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal with two Gold Stars, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Combat Action Ribbon and numerous other unit and personal awards. Paddy and his wife, Karen, live in Carlsbad, California.
Michael Fleming is the CEO of Parlour Enterprises, Inc., parent company of Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlour Restaurants, which he co-founded in 2000. He also does educational and motivational presentations at industry conventions and churches. He is a court certified expert witness in roller and ice skating, family fun center, and restaurants with emphasis on design and operations. Michael has had wide variety of careers including Los Angeles Police Officer, CBS Sports Analyst, owner/developer of multiple roller skating rinks and family fun centers, and as a board member of A Million Thanks since its inception.
He lives in Orange, California, with his wife, Robbin, and has four children and one grandchild.
Dr. Julie Zimmerer
Dr. Zimmerer holds a Master’s of Science in Health Care Administration with a concentration in Biomechanical trauma and is the founder of My Choice In-Home and Senior Care. My Choice was awarded the Veterans Administration Homemaker Services contract through Loma Linda Healthcare Systems, where it aided veterans in their home recovery and daily living. Dr. Zimmerer frequently lectures on the subjects of dementia, Know Your Benefits, and how to care for aging individuals and enjoys educating others on the benefits of healthy living. Dr. Zimmerer and her husband, Bill, live in Dana Point, California.
Joe grew up in Florida, Washington DC, and California. He received his undergraduate degree in Political Science at UC Santa Clara and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. Following law school, Joe served as a law clerk to the Honorable D. Lowell Jensen, United States District Judge. Since 2008, Joe has worked for the United States Department of Justice as a federal prosecutor in the United States Attorney's Office, investigating and prosecuting a variety of criminal cases including fraud, public corruption, and violent crime. He is presently the Deputy Chief of the Orange County Office, where he is responsible for supervising federal prosecutions. Joe lives in Newport Beach, California.
Rich Watkin is the Campaign Director at the LA Philharmonic and is responsible for the organization’s fundraising initiatives. Prior to this role, Rich was the VP for Advancement for the Institute for Shipboard Education at the University of Virginia. The Institute’s floating campus, the MV Explorer, provided a unique platform for donor stewardship and cultivation. Before joining ISE, Rich served as Associate Vice President for Development at Claremont McKenna College (CMC), where he managed all direct fundraising activities for a $600 million campaign. He holds a B.A. in English from Susquehanna University, and completed graduate coursework at Colgate University and St. Lawrence University where he earned a Masters of Education in Counseling and Human Development. Rich and his wife, Lynn, live in Claremont, California.
Brian Brinson began his career consulting for ecommerce companies in 1999. After launching many successful campaigns for clients, he started his own ecommerce website in 2005. Brian and his team launched many successful ecommerce websites. After selling a major portion of the company in 2009, Brian started consulting for other large ecommerce and service-based companies. He has spent over 2.4 million dollars with Google advertising and is an expert in bringing the right traffic and converting those visitors into sales. Brian and his team have created and maintain A Million Thanks website and marketing.
What We're About
A Million Thanks Organization
Mission Statement – A Million Thanks provides support and appreciation to our active and veteran military men and women through sending letters and granting betterment of life wishes, as well as providing higher education scholarships to their children
From Military – Want to know what our troops think of your acts of support and appreciation? Click here to find out!
Send a letter
A Million Thanks supports our active, reserve, and veteran military by sending millions of letters of thanks and encouragement directly to our service members.
Grant a Wish
A Million Thanks supports our injured military veterans by granting wishes that make their lives more enjoyable.