BY FRANCIS ROWAN, DIRECTOR
Things here in Region 8 are calm. With the help and experience of the State Council Presidents—and I must say that they are the best of the best—this is going to be a very competitive Region. We are working on getting all of our chapters compliant with their reports so that we do not have any suspensions.
I would like to thank everyone who supported my run for office. I will do the best job that I can. I have great sources of information in my State Council Presidents and the national BOD. While in office, I will be looking to the membership for ideas and suggestions on how best to lead the Region.
A little bit about the Region: Alaska is doing well; they have a great program called Boxes for Heroes. Ric Davidge, the Alaska State Council President, is doing a radio talk show every other week and speaks about veterans’ issues with one of the top radio talk show hosts. He said that the mayors’ task force on homelessness should have a report ready in January; the task force is purchasing a 50-room hotel for the homeless.
Washington reports that its batting average over the last year for granted claims through the VA has been in the high 80th percentile. This is a great accomplishment, especially compared to larger VSOs. The president of Chapter 102 emceed the Auburn Veterans Day Parade and Luncheon. In Central and Eastern Washington, the service officer organized a Veterans Coalition, which serves as a one-stop shop for veterans of all eras. They help with processing claims and with food, utilities, rent, gas, and general information about VA benefits.
Idaho is working hard on chapter suspensions. Montana and Oregon are in good shape.