In an open letter to military veterans
, United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki challenged all Americans with providing assistance and advice to the future direction of the VA. Secretary Sinkseki stated, “We know that results count, that the department will be measured by what we do, not what we promise, and that our best days as an organization supporting veterans are ahead of us”.
Secretary Shinseki, the first Japanese-American four-star general of the US Army, was nominated by President Barack Obama. Shinseki serves as the seventh Secretary of VA, which celebrates 20 years as a cabinet-level department on March 15.
After 9/11, Secretary Shinseki served both in Operation Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom in prosecuting the Global War on Terror. The 38-year Army war veteran also served in Vietnam where he was wounded in combat.
Secretary Shinseki cites a comprehensive review to transform the VA into an organization of the 21st century by stating, “I am fully committed to fulfilling President Obama's vision for transforming our department so that it will be well-positioned to perform this duty even better during the 21st Century.”
Director Jim Willis of the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs (ODVA) said, “I appreciate Secretary Shinseki's sincere appreciation of the many sacrifices made by our nation's veterans and their families and his commitment to provide them with the very best in services. I look forward to working with him and the staff at the US Department of Veterans Affairs”.
Secretary Shinseki holds the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit (with Oak Leaf Clusters), Bronze Star Medal with “V” Device (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters), Purple Heart (with Oak Leaf Cluster), Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters), Air Medal, Parachutist Badge, Ranger Tab, Joint Chiefs of Staff Identification Badge, and the Army Staff Identification Badge.
To learn more about VA call 1-800-827-1000 or go online at www.va.gov
. Service Officers are stationed throughout the entire state of Oregon. To locate a Service Officer near you, go online at www.oregon.gov/ODVA/VSODIRECT
or call 1-800-828-8801.