Meet Our Founder
Chaplain Lou Koon has served as a hospital, fire, law enforcement and military chaplain. He is currently the Crisis Intervention Chaplain for the Peachtree City Police Department, and a trainer for First Responder CIT Training in service to the Georgia Public Safety Training Center.
In 2012 he founded Armed Forces Mission for the purpose of providing rapid response intervention to veterans, first responders and community members at risk of suicide. He has conducted 2,000 successful suicide interventions in both military and civilian communities and served on the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health Strategic Committee in the drafting of the 2020-2025 State Suicide Prevention Plan. He is currently a consultant to the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health for the Safe and Secure Project.
He is the author of a several books including Listen Learn Lead which serves as the primary curriculum for AFM’s Intervene Challenge. More than 24,000 individuals have participated in this one-day training event to gain the skills that save lives including more than 500 first responder agencies, The Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police, GA Sheriffs Association, 101st Airborne, the 169th Fighter Wing USAF and others.
For his efforts he was inducted into the University of North Georgia Alumni Hall of Fame in 2018, and was most recently awarded the Distinguished Service Medal by the Flowery Branch Police Department for his efforts in a 10-hour standoff involving police and an at-risk veteran.
He retired from the US Army Reserves as a chaplain at the rank of LTC serving as the Subject Matter Expert in Suicide Prevention with a final assignment at FT Gordon with the 359th Signal Brigade having previously served as Family Life Chaplain for the 80th Training Command.
Lou holds a Master of Divinity in Education and a Doctorate in Pastoral Counseling and completed Clinical Education at Georgia Baptist and Piedmont Hospital. He is a member of the Georgia Chiefs of Police Association, International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, and the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association.
He and his wife Sherry have four grown sons, two of which are active duty with the US Air Force, one a veteran of the US Coast Guard and the youngest a fire fighter/EMT with the Atlanta Fire Department. They have six grandchildren and make their home in Sharpsburg GA.
Board of Directors
Chairman Carl Hall (LTC USA Ret.)
Vice Chair Bob Babich (Army Veteran)
Secretary Dr. Heather Burrell (Army Veteran)
Treasurer Adrien Neely (USAF Veteran)
Active Duty Liaison MSGT MaCrae Koon (USAF)
Fundraising Ed Sherwood (LTC USA Ret.)
Staff Resilience Officer Ricky Burrell (LTC USA Ret.)
South Carolina Liaison Tom von Kaenel (LTC USA Ret.)
Faith Group Liaison Steve Holloway (MSgt USAF Ret.)
First Responder Liaison Al Hogan (Detective Atlanta Police Dep.)
BG (R) Peter Madsen—Chairman Emeritus
Chief Janet Moon—Peachtree City Police
Chief Michael Persley—Albany GA Police
Chief Randy Mundy—Tyrone Police
Chief Scott Gray—Fayetteville Police
Debbie Parker—North Georgia Region Liaison
Ed and Niki Vanderslice—Civilian Community Liaison
Isabella Hurst—UNG Award Recipient now Active-Duty Liaison
Jodi Isley—Courageous Challenge and Liaison I-20 East corridor
Kevin Briggs (CHIPS Ret.)—Suicide Intervention Advocate
Michael Powell—Family Connection Liaison
MSgt (R) Anita Holloway—New member for 2023
Sheriff Barry Babb—Fayette County Sheriff’s Office