Dana Point 5th Marine Regiment Advisory Brigade
The Purpose and Mission of the Advisory Brigade is to provide suggested advice and assistance to the Dana Point 5th MAR Support Group Board as it relates this body’s fundraising & outreach efforts for the benefit of our 5th Marines-Sailors, Wounded and their Families. This support will meet the needs of those who are so deserving whether they be located here at Camp Pendleton or deployed in a Combat Zone.
ADVISORY BRIGADE OFFICERS & COMMANDERS
John Hicks - Chairman
Bob Perdue - Vice Chairman
Erin Meluso - Secretary
John Hicks, Commander
John and his wife, Wanda, are the owners of the Harbor Grill Mesquite Grilled Seafood Restaurant located in the Dana Point Harbor. A former Los Angeles Police Officer, John has served as a past director of 5th Marine Regiment Support Group. In his role as Brigade board member, John helps maintain the Trevor Yurista Marine Corps mixed martial arts dojo and fitness center located at the 5th Mar training center at Camp San Mateo.
Bob Perdue, Vice Chairman
Born in Toronto, Canada and became a U.S. Citizen at age 21. I completed my BS in Business Administration at Cal State Fullerton. My professional career has been spent in commercial real estate as a Senior Banking Officer and Chief Financial Officer for various private real estate development firms. My wife and I have been long time residents of Dana Point/San Clemente where we raised 5 children. We’re lifelong boating enthusiasts and active members of the Dana Point Yacht Club since 2009, where I spent 7 years as a Director, culminating with Commodore in 2016. I have chaired many charitable committees at DPYC including the Richard Henry Dana Charity Regatta and the Marine 5th Regiment Family Christmas Brunch. I have an extensive background working with non-profit organizations including District Chairman of the Boy Scouts of America and a Director on the O.C. Council. I have served as a Director on many charitable boards including a founding Director of the San Clemente Pop Warner Football Organization.
Erin Dugan Meluso, Secretary
A lifelong sailor and 20-year resident of San Juan Capistrano, Erin Meluso is the president of RADD; the Entertainment Industry's Voice for Road Safety. Here she applies 35+ years of marketing and promotional skills to create edutainment: music and entertainment-driven outreach materials and programs to prevent traffic crashes among teens and adults, ages 18-34, notably college students and young enlisted military personnel. She started her career in the global surfing industry, first at Hang Ten, then as a junior partner in Lightning Bolt, followed by West Coast Editor at Boating Magazine. Her key skills are coalition-development, consensus-building and communications. Erin is proud to be the Secretary of the Advisory Brigade for the Dana Point 5th Marines Regiment Support Group.
Terry Rifkin, Chairman Commander
Terry has a private practice in Laguna Niguel as a licensed Psychotherapist. She has a special recognition in her field by holding a Diplomate in Clinical Social Work. Terry is also a member of “Who’s Who of American Professional and Business Women”. She is a published author and has served as a Clinical Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern California. Terry is a Charter member, Past President and Past Director of the Monarch Beach Sunrise Rotary Club and a sustaining Paul Harris Fellow. Terry was recognized in her community with the “Heart and Soul Award” for August of 2011. This award recognizes Orange County citizens for their passion for life and their dedication for making a difference. In March of 2012, Terry was honored by Assemblywoman Diane Harkey as the 73rd Assembly District Woman of the Year. This honor was given for Terry’s tireless community service and her devoted efforts with our military troops and their families.
In 2008, Terry was selected to be the Rotary District Business Rotarian of the Year. When the Dana Point 5th Marine Regiment Support Group was incorporating, she was on the inaugural board and is the only remaining Director from its origin. She served as Director of Support and Outreach between 2008-2012 and then President of the organization through the end of 2018. She is now the Chairman of the Board and a member of the Advisory Brigade. She looks forward to many more years in advisory, public relations and fundraising roles.
Mike Lipscombe - DPSG President, Commander
Mike is a former Marine and Vietnam veteran serving with HMM 163 and others at Marble Mountain in 1965-66. After his discharge, he went back to school and completed 2 engineering degrees and a masters in Finance. He retired from 3M Ceradyne, a maker of ballistic protection for the Marines, and other branches of our Armed Forces. Prior to that he spent his career in the Aerospace and Defense industries in California working for companies such as Honeywell, Meggitt and Armtec in the supply chain area. He serves as Vice President on the Board of Fisher House of Southern California, and has served as Adjutant and Board Member of the American Legion Post 291 Newport Harbor where he is a life member. He is also a life member of Post 022 of the Marine Corps League in San Clemente. Mike moved to Dana Point in 2008 from Hermosa Beach, and enjoys volunteering for groups that support active and retired military, including their families, sailing and working on his old BMW and most of all spending time with his wife Vicki.
Bruce L. Beal, Advisory Brigade Member and Judge Advocate, Commander
Bruce has practiced private business and nonprofit law in Dana Point since 2003, living there since 1999. He is the organizer and/or legal advisor, officer, or director for most of the significant nonprofit organizations in the Dana Point area, including the DP5th. Bruce and his wife, Marlene, were presented the 2016 Founders Day Award in recognition of their active participation in the community by the Dana Point Historical Society. He was presented the 2016 Citizen of the Year Award in recognition of his participation in the community by the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce. Bruce has legally supported businesses, professionals, and nonprofits in South Orange County for many years. He legally created and has supported the Dana Point 5th Marines Support Group since its beginning 10 years ago. He is also a considerable volunteer, contributor, and seeker of community support to the Group.
Alexis Federico, Commander
Alexis brings the unique perspective of being a female Marine and a Marine spouse to the Advisory Brigade. Alexis is a Marine combat veteran who served from 2003-2013 and flew UH-1N and UH-1Y Huey helicopters. In addition to her combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, Alexis was the first female instructor pilot at Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One. After leaving active duty, Alexis attended law school at the University of California, Irvine and now practices law at Irell & Manella, LLP in Newport Beach.
Alexis grew up in a military family and was a member of the Corps of Cadets as an undergraduate at Texas A&M University. She is a founding member of the Veteran’s Legal Clinic at UCI Law, former director of the International Refugee Assistance Project at UCI Law, and serves on the associate board for the Orange County Bar Foundation’s Project Youth.
James Federico, Commander
Jamey served nearly 22 years as a Marine, first as an infantry officer and later as a Cobra helicopter pilot. He served four combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and held numerous command and staff positions, most notably as the Commanding Officer of Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 369. Jamey was elected to the Dana Point City Council in November 2018.
Jamey is a real estate investor and the owner of a general contracting construction company. He holds a BS in Geomechanics from the University of Rochester, an MBA from Webster University, and is a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.
Nick Frankovich, Commander
Nick grew up in Ohio on Lake Erie where he learned to sail and gained a fondness for racing. He joined the Air Force right out of High school and became Crew Chief on the A-10 Thunderbolt. Nick finished up his Duty on the west coast and was drawn to San Clemente and Dana Point for the climate and proximity to the ocean. He has been here since 1983 and started his own business in 1987. Nick has always wanted a way to give thanks to the Marines for what they do for him and this country and believes this support group was the best way to do that.
Tom McKeown COL USMC-Ret, Commander
Tom was born in Oklahoma in 1938 and raised in Texas. Upon graduation from Rice University in Houston, Tom was commissioned as a 2nd Lt in the United States Marine Corps. Tom had 27 years of honorable service to our Country and our Corps. In 1967 when he served as the Company Commander in the 9th Engineer Battalion in Vietnam, he supported both Marine Corps and Army units. The company was involved in seven combat operations in the long and bloody battles comprising the siege for Hue City during the TET Offensive in 1968. During this operation, he supported the 1st Battalion 5th Marines.
Tom earned the Legion of Merit, Navy Commendation medal with combat “V” and gold star in lieu of award. He also received a Combat Action Ribbon- numerous unit commendations and deployment service medals.
Tom O’Malley, COL USMC (Ret), Commander
Tom is a proud member of the Dana Pont 5th Marine Regiment Support Group Advisory Brigade. Tom’s military career commenced as an enlisted service member with the U.S. Navy and followed by over 28 years of active service with the USMC. During Tom’s career, he was the Commanding Officer (CO) of two Marine Corps Squadrons, and the CO of a Marine Air Control Group, with 11 units in 8 States. He served two combat tours of duty in Viet Nam, served in the 1973 Yom Kippur War, was part of a joint international military operation conducting drug interdiction in Central America, and he also served in the Persian Gulf during Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Upon leaving active service, Tom helped establish a joint venture for the Royal Saudi Air Defense Forces with headquarters in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Upon completing his assignment in Saudi Arabia and upon relocating back to Southern California, Tom was hired as Deputy Executive Director for the El Toro Reuse Planning Authority, responsible for the civilian reuse and redevelopment of the former El Toro Marine Corps Air Station. Shortly after completing that mission, Tom was recruited by the Transportation Corridor Agencies and continued to serve as a consultant for that organization.
Tom Vetter - LT COL USMC (Ret), Commander
Tom joined the Marine Corps Reserve as a Jr. in High School in 1952. He went on to active duty and served with the 11th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division as a Corporal in Korea.
Upon discharge in February 1956 from active duty, Tom pursued a career in the Marine Corps reserves in Kansas City Missouri. He is a “Mustang” officer and was commissioned as a 1st Lt. in March of 1969 and served as a counterintelligence officer and an anti-terrorist officer. Tom retired after 33 years of active and reserve service to our Country and our Corps.
Jeremy Quinton, Commander
James Surber, Commander