J.D., Managing Director, Co-founder
Schmeling focuses his work on establishing and maintaining innovative partnerships with members of the Syracuse University community, government partners, NGOs, institutions of higher education and others with a stake in the IVMF’s mission and values.
At the IVMF, Schmeling provides leadership in design, implementation, and evaluation of strategy and goals; partners with SU constituents; and focuses on veteran and inclusion activities on campus and with external stakeholders. He directly supervises the employment and research agendas for the IVMF.
A veteran of the Air Force, honorably discharged at the rank of sergeant, Schmeling was stationed in Colorado, California and Spain and engaged with active duty and civil service employees and Spanish Air Force and National Geographic Institute staff. He was assigned to the Air Force Technical Applications Center as a seismic systems computer-electronics technician, responsible for repair logistics in the Atomic Energy Detection System. While stationed in Spain at a remote detachment, he conducted resource protection, crime prevention and counter-terrorism duties. He held Top Secret security clearance. He was awarded the USAF Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the National Defense Service Medal and was a distinguished graduate of the USAF Noncommissioned Officer Preparatory Course. As part of his unit, he was awarded the USAF Organizational Excellence Award. Schmeling began his education while serving, earning credits from the Community College of the Air Force. He earned his law degree with distinction from the University of Iowa College of Law and a B.A. in political science with a minor in international studies (Latin America) from Iowa State University.
Prior to co-founding the IVMF, Schmeling served as chief operating officer and managing director at SU’s Burton Blatt Institute, and before that as interim co-director of the Iowa College of Law’s Law, Health Policy and Disability Center. He has been an adjunct professor of law and an adjunct professor of rehabilitation counseling, both at the University of Iowa.
Schmeling was project director, and authored portions of the publication, for the National Council on Disability (NCD) study, “Empowerment for Americans with Disabilities: Breaking Barriers to Careers and Full Employment,” and was an author of NCD’s study, “The Impact of the Americans with Disabilities Act: Assessing the Progress Toward Achieving the Goals of the ADA”. Additionally, he has published on the study of corporate culture, diversity and disability, civil rights in the court room, and asset and tax policy.
Schmeling has extensive experience related to veterans, education, inclusion, assistive technology, corporate culture and other topics related to employment and civil rights protections. He was principal investigator on three grants from Disabled American Veterans (DAV) and the William Bingham Foundation for components of the EBV and is co-principal investigator on a cooperative agreement with the DOL/VETS. He is a member of SU’s Veterans Best Practices Advisory Committee and advisory board member of the Taishoff Center on Inclusive Higher Education at SU. Schmeling also serves as interim executive director of the Global Universal Design Commission, a non-profit 501(c) 3 organization focused on universal design’s potential to open the built environment to the broadest possible user base.