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September/October Issue

red star bulletThe Veteran Departments : Featured Stories / Letters / President's Message / VVAF Report / Government Relations / Ask The Parliamentarian / Veterans Benefits Update / Membership Affairs Committee Report / Legislators View / ETABO Committee Report / PTSD Substance Abuse Comittee Report / TAPS / Region 7 Report / AVVA Report / SHAD/Project 112 Task Force Report / Veterans Against Drugs Task Force Report / VetsConnect Report / Homeless Veterans Task Force Report / Women Veterans Committee Report / Arts of War / Book Review / Membership Notes / Chapter of The Year / Locator / Reunions

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AVVA REPORT

BY MARY MILLER, PRESIDENT

Elections were held in Tucson. Four of our past board members chose not to remain on the board. “Experienced (not old) soldiers never die, they just fade away.” Fran Davis, Susan Chechoski, Bill Williams, and Ann Pancrazio will be around to help, and we wish them well.

The newly elected officers are: Mary Miller, President; Elaine Simmons, Vice President; Patsy Varnell, Secretary; and Sonja Holybee, Treasurer: The new Regional Directors are: Region 1, Frances Cartier; Region 2, Linda Haberkorn; Region 3, Nancy Nix; Region 4, Mary Yeomans; Region 5, Judy Bolio; Region 6, Diane Kuhn; Region 7, Kathy Andras; Region 8, David Mitchell; and Region 9, Erma Hibbler.

If you have any questions or need help, please ask your Regional Director or any of the officers. That is why we are here.

Our AVVA Project Friendship, a joint effort with VVA chapters and state councils, raised $1,400 and collected $400 worth of donated supplies for Project TIHAN in Tucson. A check was presented to TIHAN at the Friday board meeting. The United Spinal Association will receive a check for $2,000 at the October Board Meeting. We thank everyone who gave so generously. If you wish to join the AVVA Talk List, contact Sonja Holybee at sholybee@avva.org. Discussions, information, and ideas are exchanged. Please join us. We are working on a new list of committee chairs and AVVA special advisers to the VVA committees. It should be completed for distribution at the October Board of Directors meeting.

Our application for the Group Exemption Letter, which will allow state AVVA associations to be tax-exempt without having to submit their own separate paperwork, is being reviewed by the IRS. We are waiting for a final determination from the IRS and will let you know as soon as we hear. The Group Exemption letter will allow our nine Incorporated State Associations to be exempt from taxes. As additional states are incorporated, they will also be included in the group and be exempt from taxes.

The Board has voted by e-mail to approve creating a policy and procedures manual for chapters. It is not mandatory to have chapters, nor are we ready to start.
A Board vote in April made dues $20 for all members, including those who are incarcerated. This decision was reached after a lengthy discussion and is recorded in the April Board minutes, along with a letter sent in June by our Past Interim Executive Director, Bob Thomson, to all VVA chapters and VVA state councils.

I am working with my Congressman to look into having the In Memory Plaque, which is now on the ground, put on a pedestal with lights and a marker so everyone knows it is there. I am afraid this is going to be a long and difficult task. If petitions are needed, I’ll ask for your help.

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