Our Leadership Team
AFRA Board of Directors
John Monahan is the President and co-founder of the Armed Forces Retirees Association (AFRA). John served in the US Air Force as an Airborne Radio Operator in the Ground Engineering Installation Agency Foreign Service from 1960-1964 with the 807th Tactical Squadron (NATO) and went on to serve in the AFR from 1965-1968. In 1974 John joined the US Army and served for 26 years in the Massachusetts National Guard's 26th Infantry Division, retiring as a Sergeant-Major in 2000.
John is an Executive Board member for American Legion post 221 in Bedford, MA. and is a member of the Yankee Division Veterans Association and Disabled & Limbless Veterans, Inc. John has a Masters degree from Lesley University and is a strong proponent for continuing education programs and training for veterans.
Tom Ardita is the Vice President of the Armed Forces Retirees Association. Tom served in the National Guard from 1967-2004. During his nearly forty years of service, Tom served as the Command Sergeant-Major of the Massachusetts Army National Guard (MAANG) Medical Command, as the medical liaison for all military technicians and active Guard-Reserve soldiers in the MAANG, as the medical liaison to the State surgeon for all soldier medical issues throughout the Commonwealth and as a pre-deployment team leader for the MAANG.
Tom is a member of the American Legion and is the commander of the 114th Chapter of the Yankee Division Veterans Association.
James Burton is the Secretary and Treasurer of the Armed Forces Retirees Association. James retired from the US Air Force after 26 years and served around the globe in locations such as Lackland, Biggs and Bergstrom AFBs, TX; Sidi Slimane AB, Morocco; Kadena AB, Okinawa; Phan Rang AB, Vietnam; Rickenbacker AFB, OH;
Cam Ranh Bay AB, Vietnam; and Hanscom AFB, MA. After retiring, James relocated to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts where he is an active member of the Bedford community and a member of The American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars. James is a co-founder of the Armed Forces Retirees Association.
Betty Collins is a Director of the Armed Forces Retirees Association and President of the AFRA LowCountry SC1 Chapter. Betty enlisted in the US Army, where she spent 20 years and six months working in various Information Technology (IT) jobs. While serving, she achieved her Bachelors of Computer Science with the University of Maryland. She later went on to also achieve her Masters of Computer Information Systems at the University of Phoenix.
After she retired from the military as MSG/E8 in Dec 2001, she embarked upon another career as a contractor working at SPAWAR Charleston now known as NIWC Charleston. She worked as a Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Subject Matter Expert for five years, later converting to Government where she eventually became the PKI Lead and as Cybersecurity Lead on the GCSS-MC and the Unified Capabilities Project. Her current position is the Tier IV Supervisor/Computer Scientist.
Betty is a Sunday school teacher, member of the L.O. Johnson Choir, Board of Trustees and President of the Daughters of Sarah. Betty has established two annual programs for the church and surrounding communities: 40 Days Fit for the King (promotes physical fitness and healthier lifestyles) and Dress for Success (teaching teenagers about interviews, resumes, summer jobs and internship opportunities etc.).
Terry Lloyd is a Director of the Armed Forces Retirees Association and Chair of the Legislative Affairs Committee. He retired from the Air Force in 2000 after serving 22 years, achieving the rank of Senior Master Sergeant. For the next 19 years he was the Director of the Kissimmee Gateway Airport, where part of his duties was to advocate for the airport with local, state, and federal elected officials and agencies. Currently Terry is a consultant in the airport and aviation industry and a paid freelance journalist and writer, including writing articles for a regional Orlando area newspaper, always with a focus on veterans and support for our military history and heritage.
Terry hopes to gain greater stability and reduce/eliminate costs associated with military retirees and veterans benefits and enhance programs wherever possible.
Thomas O’Sullivan is a Director of the Armed Forces Retirees Association. He retired from the Army after serving for 42 years, achieving the rank of Chief Warrant Officer 5. He was the first Command Chief Warrant Officer (CCWO) for the state of Massachusetts. He ended his career as the CCWO for the country at the National Guard Bureau. Tom is currently the Region 1 Warrant Officer representative for the National Guard Association of the United States. He is a Life Member of a multitude of military organizations dealing with benefit issues for active and retired military. He has been with AFRA since its inception believing strongly in its mission for military retirees.
Barbara Purchia is the Clerk of the Armed Forces Retirees Association. She is married to a Viet Nam veteran and is active in the Bedford MA Patriotic Holiday Committee, planning town ceremonies for Memorial Day, Veterans Day and other patriotic events with a focus of recognizing Veterans of the US Armed Services. Barbara was a software and software process engineer, manager, and director for over 35 years. Since retiring she has been active in several non-profit ventures, including starting a Farmers Market and a stained glass cooperative. She has co-authored several books. She is responsible for maintaining the AFRA website and database.