Niel Van Ess is passionate about the Foundation’s mission and truly enjoys stepping in to provide his fundraising expertise and years of experience for the great cause of helping veterans.

Niel has been in public service for many years while serving in myriad ways. He was elected and served on the Board of Education for 19 years. During those 19 years, he had the pleasure of serving as President for 12 years. In addition to his work on the Board of Education, he is also Chairman of the Gov’s Council on Drug & Alcoholism, also known as GCADA. Neil takes great pleasure in having served in this position for 23 years.

Other major accomplishments for Neil include being a Trustee of one of the largest Police Unions in the USA, the New Jersey State PBA, where he directly participated in fundraising efforts. Here he especially contributed to the area of target marketing for medium and small businesses.

During his time at JVC, he was an integral part of developing the logo Certificate of Merit/Purple Heart Medal -“Remembering Our Past -Honoring Our Present – Protecting & Persevering Our Legacy.”

His past tenure as a National Commander shows his dedication and undeniable determination to advance the Foundation’s mission. He proposed strong fundraising ideas and concepts and developed the plan for the special membership, “Legacy Membership Pin” which is still used today.


Years on Board:  1

Military Status: Retired Veteran

Purple Heart Recipient

Our Mission

The mission of the Purple Heart Service Foundation is to enhance the quality of life of Purple Heart recipients and other honorably discharged veterans and their families.