Minnesota Veteran - February

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Desk of the Commissioner - February

Commissioner Shellito

Activity at MDVA has been relatively quiet. Activity with the legislature and Governor’s office, for MDVA, has been relatively quiet also. The Minneapolis Veterans Home has been fully funded, and we are ready to begin construction on the third and final phase.

Our office activity has focused primarily in the area of key personnel moves. Brad Lindsay has been serving as Acting Deputy Commissioner of Programs and Services for the past year. He has recently accepted the official position of Deputy Commissioner. A win for Veterans and the agency!

We have also created a new position within the agency for a “Chief of Staff.” This has been filled by Mike McElhiney, who served as our Legislative Director for the past five years. Mike’s primary mission is to ensure all the key supporting functions – finance, personnel, etc. – are in sync in supporting our two separate divisions of Program and Services and the Veterans Homes.




Minnesota Military Radio Show Host Wins Highest Civilian Award


During a live recording of Minnesota Military Radio a weekly public affairs show, host Tom Lyons received a very special surprise. Maj. General Richard Nash, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard presented Lyons with the highest award given to a civilian, the Minnesota Superior Civilian Service Medal. Over the last five years, Lyons has volunteered his time to host the show and has displayed great dedication to telling the stories of our state's more than 369,000 Veterans and 13,000 citizen Soldiers and Airmen. To hear Tom’s live reaction to the award and to listen to other podcasts visit: http://minnesotamilitaryradiohour.com/20160103/.


Veteran Rapid Response Team


During this year's Point-in-Time count a Veteran Rapid Response Team was organized by the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA). Outreach workers who identified unsheltered homeless Veterans connected these individuals with social workers who specialize in finding housing solutions for Veterans experiencing homelessness. Those social workers invited the Veterans to join the Homeless Veteran Registry and develop a personalized housing plan. Within the seven-county Twin Cities metro area Veterans were offered transportation to a temporary crisis shelter, where they were able to connect with these social workers in person in addition to a warm place to sleep, food, and a "sleep kit" to keep.

The response team operated continuously through mid-afternoon on Friday, Jan. 29 and was a collaboration between MDVA, the American Red Cross, the federal Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Department of Minnesota, the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans (MACV), the Minnesota National Guard, the City of Saint Paul, and other partners.

Star Tribune Article >>

MPR Article >>


New Competitive SOT Grant - through Feb. 22

Until recently, MDVA was limited to managing grants outlined by the Minnesota State Legislature, and was available to a limited amount of organizations selected by the Legislature. This year, with funds raised from the Minnesota “Support Our Troops” License Plate Program (SOT), MDVA is happy to announce a new grant opportunity. Ranging in amounts from $1,000 to $100,000, these competitive SOT grants are available to foundations whose mission is to provide services with the purpose of supporting and improving the lives of Veterans and their families, and organizations whose grant application project is to provide services with the purpose of supporting and improving the lives of Veterans and their families.



Continuous Improvement


The MDVA was recently recognized by the Governor for the fifth time in six years with the Governor’s Continuous Improvement Award presented by the Governor’s office and the Better Government for a Better Minnesota initiative. This award recognizes significant organizational achievements across Minnesota government. MDVA, provided by the staff at the Minnesota Veterans Home—Silver Bay, created a program called Reducing Psychotropic Medication in Special Care and Skilled Care Households and has implemented it with amazing success.



Bronze Star Ceremony

Bronze Star

On Jan. 22, 2016 SGT Earl W. Kotham was presented with the Bronze Star for Meritorious Service at the Landmark Center in St. Paul. Photos from the event can be found on the MDVA Flickr page.


Event Album >>


Minneapolis Veterans Home Career Fair

Join our team of dedicated health service technicians, certified nursing assistants and licensed practical nurses in “Serving Those Who Served” at the Minnesota Veterans Home - Minneapolis. Tour our new Building 21, discover the benefits of state employment, apply and interview immediately for open positions in all shifts.

Please bring work history and references.

  • Wed. Feb. 17: 12 p.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Thurs. Feb 18: 3 p.m. - 7 p.m.
  • Sat. Feb. 19: 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.