Veterans Helping Veterans Program Offers FREE training in the Innovation District


St. Petersburg, Florida – (September 20, 2017) – The new St. Petersburg-based non-profit Veterans Orthopedic Training Center,  with the motto of Veterans Helping Veterans, is slated to open September 27, 2017 with an official ribbon cutting set for at 5:30 pm. The location is 625 Sixth Avenue South, Suite 365 located in the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital medical complex.  The web site is:  For more information on volunteering or making a donation call:  727-394-1700The public is invited to an Open House on Tuesday, Sept. 26th from 12 to 7 pm.

The Veterans Orthopedic Training Center is designed to train veterans AT NO CHARGE  to work with casting and bracing orthopedic patients from pediatrics to geriatrics. This  new program was created by Charlie Barocas requiring students to dedicate 50  hours of “distance learning” and 40 hours of in-residence hands on training in St. Petersburg, Florida. The students will leave the program as trained Level One orthopedic technologists.

With the birth of the non-profit organization founder Mr. Barocas will train 300 veterans a year, 24 students a month. Since thousands of Orthopedic technologists are needed at hospitals and private practices, this training will allow vets to obtain employment. Due to donations, there will be NO CHARGE TO THE VET.  The founder and his sponsors will invest $200,000 a year training hundreds of veterans a year at no charge. The students will stay and play in the City of St. Pete, booking over 1,500 room nights a year.

The non-profit organization will be located in the downtown “innovation” district of St. Petersburg. The experienced staff also includes co-lead instructor Kyle Nagy and many volunteers.



After returning from Vietnam in 1971, New Yorker Charlie Barocas enjoyed a successful career for over 45 years. Known as one of the top orthopedic technologists in the country, he now teaches, lectures and enjoys the St. Pete lifestyle. Now he wants to give back. He’s trained over 9,500 Orthopedic Technologists as the director and lead instructor of the American Society of Orthopedic Professionals. His passion burns bright, so he found a way to offer sunshine and positive vibes with a mission of “veterans helping veterans.”  This Fall, he’ll welcome the national headquarters for The Veterans Orthopedic Training Center. “Our desire is to provide the experienced Military medic a pathway to civilian employment in Orthopedic Fracture Casting and Bracing.”

Founder and Director Charlie Barocas, ROT, CO,  is an American Board Certified Orthotist. He is a graduate of the Hospital for Joint Diseases, NYC and the Academy of Health Sciences, US Army. He has over 47 years of experience in clinical orthopedics. He has been on staff at Bronx Lebanon Department of Orthopedic Surgery and Special Surgery Hospital in New York City. From 1980 to 1990, Mr. Barocas was the x-ray technologist/orthotist for Washington Heights Orthopedic Services, an orthopedic-only urgent care in New York City. He has been a Board Certified Orthotist since 1980

He served in the New York State Army National Guard with the 102nd Medical Battalion and the America Division in Vietnam where he was awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received in combat. He was a member of the medical team at the Lake Placid Winter Olympic Games in 1980. From 1991 to 1996, he was on staff at Baysports Orthopedic Center in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Mr. Barocas was an instructor at St. Petersburg College where he instructed students in fracture casting techniques in the Physician Assistant program. His unique experiences in front line orthopedics and his love for his work have been the catalyst to start the American Society of Orthopedic Professionals (ASOP) and its training programs since 1999.

He is now working with college level athletic training programs setting up ASOP approved casting and bracing courses for Athletic Training (AT) students. This will allow AT students to sit for the Registered Orthopedic Technologists (ROT) and Orthopedic Brace Technologists OBT exams in the 4th academic year of college. Eighteen major universities have signed up in the first year with over 400 students taking ASOP college level instruction.