The Official Voice of Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. ®
An organization chartered by the U.S. Congress

August 2002
PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE
Photo:Michael Keating
Come Together
BY THOMAS H. COREY

We are all very much looking forward to the 2002 biennial Leadership Conference, which runs from August 15-17 at the El Conquistador in Tucson. This is an unparalleled opportunity for new and old VVA members to come together for the betterment of themselves, their chapters, and the entire organization by taking part in the conference's many and varied seminars and workshops, listening to the words of our guest speakers, and interacting with other Vietnam veteran leaders from around the nation. The conference's extensive agenda may be found on VVA's website, www.vva.org click on the Tucson icon.

We have heard plenty of feedback from members who have attended our Leadership Conferences, letting us know that they have provided excellent opportunities to pick up information to take back to chapters and State Councils. We design all the workshops, seminars, and other Leadership Conference programs with the input from our members. That's why all the events focus on what is most important to most VVA members.

Joe Galloway, the former Vietnam War correspondent, longtime Washington journalist, and the co-author of We Were Soldiers Once and Young, will be the keynote speaker. At the Awards Luncheon, we will present the annual VVA Member, Chapter, Incarcerated Chapter, State Council, State Council Newspaper, and Chapter Newsletter of the Year awards. Hollywood director and screenwriter Randall Wallace--Braveheart, Pearl Harbor, We Were Soldiers - will receive the President's Award for transforming Gen. Hal Moore and Joe Galloway's book into a riveting film. 

Other events include the annual charity Golf Tournament, with funds going to VVA's Mike Nash Scholarship Fund, and a full day on Wednesday of Advanced Service Representative Training.

The Leadership Conference presents an opportunity, also, for VVA to publicize our positions on issues that are important to our membership. These issues are addressed at all levels in VVA. This list of activities undertaken by our chapters and State Councils is a long and impressive one. They are working hard in many areas, including education in schools, support of Gold Star Mothers, Sons and Daughters in Touch, visiting veterans in VA hospitals and nursing homes, coordinating memorial services, mounting Honor Guards, and being present for our returning service members' remains.

I have said it before, but it's worth repeating again: I am proud of the chapters and State Councils that have made extra efforts to reach out to their communities, to veterans and their families, to those who do not know of VVA, and to those who still live with the loss from war.

As we leave summer, it is my hope that everyone has had a chance to take some time with family and friends. Please be sure everyone you know is registered to vote. Remember our service members. God Bless. Peace.

   

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