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

March/April 2005

Multifaceted Projects


Congratulations to AVVA members in Florida Project ABC who helped more than 955 families and 3,000 children. I want to congratulate and thank all VVA and AVVA members across the nation who donated to, and helped with, this project. AVVA states and affiliated chapters are doing many projects for their communities and are helping military personnel and their families. Nearly every state has a program helping active-duty military, either by sending care packages overseas or supporting families at home. Community projects include serving meals at homeless centers, visiting veterans at VA hospitals, and helping with food pantries. Illinois has Project Pillow Christina. They sew pillows and present them to service people heading overseas on long flights. Austin, Texas, Chapter 915 has a welcome home at the airport for returning veterans. There are so many projects that are being done by AVVA, working alone or with VVA. Please let us know what your projects are.

Our Leadership Conference will be held at Reno during the VVA Convention. Our Project Friendship recipients will be the Fisher House and a transitional home in Reno. The Fisher House has facilities near hospitals that provide accommodations for families to stay close to loved ones. Money and airline miles are needed for the Fisher House. The transitional house in Reno requires many items for grooming and basic living supplies.

Elections are being held for affiliated chapter representatives in April. This is also the year elections will be held for State Presidents for incorporated states and State Representatives for unincorporated states before the end of June. If we can be of any help, please let us know. Contact your Regional Director or any national officer.

2005 AVVA Annual Fellowship Award

It is again time to consider nominations for the Fellowship Award to be presented at the AVVA Leadership Conference in Reno in August. Past recipients were recognized for their work for veterans and their country. We in AVVA want the Fellowship Award to remain a prestigious honor. Honorees who have received the Fellowship Award in the past three years are:

Marge and Loren Herrick
John Kahler and Lynda Greene
Nancy and Charlie Montgomery
Kate Pantorello
Janis Roznowski

The award goes to individuals who go one step beyond. The requirements for nominations are:

1. Applicant must be a current member in good standing of AVVA with no pending disciplinary actions.
2. Applications must be postmarked no later than June 10.
3. Applications must include a report of no less than one page, but no more than two pages, describing the individual’s attributes and accomplishments.
4. Application must include documents or articles that reinforce your submission.
5. The Awards Committee is responsible for the selections. All submissions will remain the sole property of the Awards Committee until the AVVA Leadership Conference is closed, at which time submissions will be stored at the national office in Silver Spring, Maryland.
6. Submissions should be sent to:

Judy Bolio, Awards Committee Chair
326-16th Ave.
Silvis, IL 61282-1809

Election Report

We are preparing for Affiliated Chapter and State Representative elections. The candidates applying for these positions must be aware of the tremendous responsibility that they will be assuming.

Until now, elections for the Affiliated Chapter Representatives were held annually in April. It is now up to AVVA members affiliated with VVA chapters to decide if they would like to have elections every two years or keep their elections every year. Whichever they choose, the State Representative should be notified.

Candidates must be at least 21 years old and a member in good standing in AVVA with no pending disciplinary action. Each candidate must provide a letter of intent to the person in charge of running the election no later than 60 days prior to the election. The forms, requirements, and duties of the office of the Affiliated Chapter Representative are found in the AVVA Policy and Procedure Manual, Section Seven.

This is the year for State Representative elections. They are held in odd-numbered years, with the elections taking place between January 1 and June 30. The candidate must be 21 years of age and either an at-large regular member or a regular member affiliated with a VVA chapter. To qualify, you must have been a member for at least one year prior to the election and have no pending disciplinary actions. The current State Representative must receive a letter of intent no later than 60 days prior to the election. Members in the state will review the candidate’s letter of intent.

The most important duty of a State Representative is to be the link in the chain of communication to AVVA national. The State Representative also keeps lines of communication open with all members in the state, and serves as the liaison between the state’s AVVA members and the VVA State Council. The duties and forms for this election are found in the AVVA Policy and Procedure Manual, Section Seven.

Now is the time for us to focus on what our organization is about. With ever-increasing budget cuts and higher demands for health care services for Vietnam War veterans and returning Iraqi and Afghanistan War veterans, a strained VA will be looking for new ways to cut health care costs. It is our duty as Americans to see that no veteran is forgotten and that our country keeps its promises to those who put their lives on the line for us all.

Better Chance Scholarship

In 1998, AVVA established the Better Chance Scholarship Fund as a way to improve the lives of veterans and their families through education. The program targets students who want to go to college but cannot afford the escalating costs. Typically, one $1,000 and two $500 scholarships are awarded.

A candidate must be an AVVA or VVA member; the spouse, child or grandchild of a KIA or MIA Vietnam veteran. Interested? Visit the AVVA website, for details.


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