Veteran Action Network President’s Year-End Summary
Over the past twelve months, Veterans Action Network has continued the fight against corruption in the Department of Veterans Affairs, partnered with organizations across the country to provide care for our returning veterans, and strove to ensure our veterans are receiving the care and honor they deserve. Our nationwide network of supporters is now over 180,000 strong. Thanks to you, we’ve been able to soar to new heights in 2018.
Here are a few highlights from our efforts:
Veterans Action Network’s advocacy and awareness videos have reached over 10,000 supporters online. Here are some examples:
Support for Veterans Projects
Our returning veterans deserve nothing but the best care and resources made available to them. Veterans Action Network continues to sponsor and partner with organizations that put veterans first. In 2018, Veterans Action Network sponsored:
- The Highground – a Vietnam veterans memorial park
- Folds of Honor – an organization dedicated to providing scholarships to the children of fallen servicemen and women
- National Military Families Association – a source for Administration Officials, Members of Congress, and key decision makers when they want to understand the issues facing military families
- Veterans Cemetery Project – a true partnership between Veterans Cemetery Project and Veterans Action Network that led to over 114 installations and dedications of flags and memorials stones at cemeteries across the Midwest
- Fallen Soldiers Portraits – Veterans Action Network has partnered with Alex Yarrow, a 95-year-old US Marine Corps veteran to present unique, individual oil-painting portraits to servicemen and women who have lost their lives in Operation Iraqi Freedom I and II and Operation Enduring Freedom. To date, we have presented 13 paintings of the over 159 that Yarrow has produced
- Veteran Emergency Support – Veterans Action Network worked to secure and donate bedding, linens, and other necessary home goods to 65 veterans experiencing hardship in Wisconsin
- Camp American Legion – Veterans Action Network furnished 157 mattresses to refit Camp American Legion, a nature getaway dedicated to helping veterans reintegrate and enjoy their favorite pastime
- Tomah Veterans Affairs Hospital – Veterans Action Network purchased and installed equipment to furnish the cafe at the Tomah, WI VA. This equipment allows disabled veterans to work the cafe and earn additional income
Veterans Action Network is proud to have sponsored Clever Talks in San Diego, CA. The conference, which highlights methods of improving active-duty and veteran life, was attended by over 10,000 industry insiders and civilians. We were able to speak with veterans, active duty military, military family members, and military advocates about what they would like to see change for their best interest.
As Veterans Action Network continues to grow and expand its reach, we continue to build our leadership structure within the organization. This year we were honored to enhance our positions with individuals who truly embody the spirit of Selfless Service and Duty that Veterans Action Network stand for.
We are honored to welcome the following individuals to leadership roles within Veterans Action Network:
- Lieutenant Colonel Dan Curran, USA, Retired – President of the Board. Lieutenant Colonel Dan Curran is a retired Military Police Officer. He is a Vietnam Veteran and has been active in politics for over 20 years
- Sergeant Major Jim Kitchen, USA, Retired – Secretary of the Board. SGM Jim Kitchen is a retired Military Police Non-Commissioned Officer and Vietnam Veteran. He has been a passionate volunteer and is the spark plug that ignites Veterans Action Network’s grassroots projects. SGM Kitchen’s connections around the country help to make our projects possible
- Russell LaMarche – Veterans Cemetery Project Manager. Russ LaMarche in the President of Veterans Cemetery Project and member/partner of Veterans Action Network. His organization has partnered with Veterans Action Network to install over 115 flagpoles in Veterans cemeteries, ensuring that our Nation’s heroes are remembered and respected
- Pat Stephen – Treasurer. Pat Stephen is a life-long supporter of the Military. Despite being unable to serve himself, his family has a long tradition of military service, and he dedicates much of his time to supporting and working with Veteran organizations across the country
- Jim LaPoint – Member and Volunteer Manager. Jim manages and coordinates volunteer efforts across the midwestern region. He is instrumental in building community relationships and ensuring that manpower is provided for Veteran Action Networks’ projects
- Paul Kahr – Marketing Manager. Paul aids in capturing our volunteers at work and documenting our numerous successes. He has nurtured media relations with local television, radio stations and newspapers