John Rowan was reelected to a fifth term as National President of Vietnam Veterans of America at the organization’s 16th National Convention in Jacksonville, Florida. First elected to VVA’s highest office in 2005, Rowan has remained active with VVA since the organization’s inception in 1978.
A founding member and the first president of VVA Chapter 32 in Queens, New York, he has served as the chairman of VVA’s Conference of State Council Presidents, for three terms on the organization’s Board of Directors, and as president of VVA’s New York State Council. Rowan, who enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1965, went to language school, where he learned Indonesian and Vietnamese. He served as a linguist in the U.S. Air Force’s 6990 Security Squadron in Vietnam and at Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, providing the Strategic Air Command with intelligence on North Vietnam’s SAM sites to protect their bombing missions.
After his honorable discharge from the Air Force, Rowan received a B.A. in political science from Queens College and a master’s degree in urban affairs from Hunter College. Rowan retired from city service as an investigator with the City of New York’s Comptroller’s Office. Prior to his election as National President, Rowan served as a VVA veterans’ service representative in New York City. He lives in Middle Village, New York, with his wife, Mariann.