13 September MDVA News and Announcements

View as a webpage.

Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs

News and Announcements  -  September 13, 2019


Spotlight on MDVA Staff - Dana Burl

Dana Burl photo

Secretary George Owings has requested that MDVA staff be highlighted in upcoming editions of the MDVA e-newsletter, so you learn a little bit about us and our commitment to serving Maryland Veterans. Today, we focus on Dana Burl, MDVA Director of Outreach & Advocacy.  Dana provided the following information:

I began work at MDVA in October 2013 and I oversee all facets of communications for the Department.  In addition I serve as the Department's liaison to the Governor's Commission on Suicide Prevention and Maryland's Inter-agency Council on Homelessness.  I lead the Department's role in the Governor's Customer Service Initiative, the Veterans Services Specialist Program, and the Maryland Veterans Service Animal Program and Fund.  It is an honor to serve in this capacity and I have enjoyed the opportunity to take the Outreach Program to a new level. 

I am not a veteran, but I am a former military spouse and granddaughter to a 29th Division, US Army, World War II Veteran.  I am also the great niece to a 100th Infantry Division, US Army Medic, KIA in World War II.  (see photo)

Approximately 10 percent of Maryland's adult population has served in some capacity in the United States Uniformed Services.  This percentage does not include their family members, so we know our military connected community is much larger.  It has been an immensely humbling experience serving our veterans and families and ensuring they are aware of and have access to their earned benefits.  I could not imagine working for and with a more deserving population.  I look forward to continuing in my service to the MDVA and to watching the Outreach program prosper into 2020 and beyond.

Photo credit: Denise Nooe

MDVA Service & Benefits Program Provides Claims Assistance at the VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) in Gaithersburg

On September 10th, MDVA Benefits Specialists began offering claims assistance at the VA CBOC in Gaithersburg.  The CBOC is located at 15610 Gaither Drive, Gaithersburg, MD.  A MDVA Benefits Specialist will be there from 8:00 am to 3:30 pm on the first three Tuesdays of each month, as well as the first and third Friday of each month in Room 113.  For Information call: 240-567-5404 or 410-230-4444 ext. 1

Norma and Thomas Day photo

American Legion Post 11 in Frederick recently held an event to honor World War II Veterans.  The couple in the center, Norma and Thomas Day are both World War II Veterans and we thank them for their service.  On the left is MDVA Deputy Secretary Robert Finn and on the right is American Legion Vice Commander Ronald Holcombe. Mr. Holcombe also serves on the Maryland Veterans Commission.

Mr. Joseph Hummer photo

MDVA Deputy Secretary Robert Finn attended the American Legion Post 11 recognition of World War II Veterans.  In this photo, he is presenting a Certificate of Recognition from the Maryland Secretary of Veterans Affairs to Mr. Joseph Hummer, who is 100 years young.  Mr. Hummer served in the United States Navy from 1944 to 1946.

World War II photo

A group photo of the World War II Veterans attending the American Legion Post 11 event.

State Partner News

Governor Hogan Declares September as Suicide Prevention Awareness Month in Maryland

Suicide Prevention Month Proclamation

Suicide Prevention Month Toolkit  Maryland Suicide Prevention Program  

Governor's Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs

Most training and business development programs take place outside the office. We maintain a robust calendar of events on our website. It's updated regularly, so be sure to check back often. Here are just a few upcoming events:

09/18/2019 - Doing Business with Hollywood Casino Perryville
09/19/2019 - Adquisición 101 - En Español
09/24/2019 - Small Business Emergency Prepardeness
09/24/2015 - Negotiation Strategies & Closing Techniques
09/25/2019 - Doing Business with Ocean Downs Casino
09/25/2019 - State Procurement 101
09/28/2019 - Wealth Creation in the African American Community

Check out our full range of small business events
online at goMDsmallbiz.maryland.gov.

Before it's too late - Fighting Opioids Today

Maryland national Guard memorial

MDVA Deputy Secretary Robert Finn attended the ceremony at the Maryland National Guard Headquarters this week honoring the fallen. Read more about the monument and those remembered here.  Colonel Robert Finn, USA (Ret), is a Vietnam Veteran and retired as the 3rd Brigade Commander of the 29th Infantry Division (Light). in 2003.

Federal Partner News

Historic Baltimore National Cemetery Fall Calendar

VA Logo1



As the summer draws to a close I wanted to send out the updated 2019 event calendar for the Historic Baltimore National Cemetery Complex and highlight some new events we added over the summer. For more information about any event on the calendar, please call the HBNCC staff at 410-644-9696.


Sep 18   8:00am Saluting Branches Professional arborists and volunteers offer their time and expertise to help maintain the trees in our National Cemeteries. For more information:                www.SalutingBranches.org


Oct 1  11:00 am   Blue Star Memorial District III, Federated Garden Clubs of Maryland cordially invites you to be present at the Dedication of a Blue Star Memorial Marker Dedication to be dedicated at Baltimore National Cemetery 5511 Frederick Ave. 21228 on Tuesday, October 1.


Oct 15   11:00 am  Blue Star Memorial   District IV, Federated Garden Clubs of Maryland cordially invites you to be present at the Dedication of a Blue Star Memorial Marker to be dedicated at Loudon Park National Cemetery 3445 Frederick Ave. 21229 on Tuesday, October 15, 2019


AMVETS Elects First Female National Commander, Military.com article

REAch Veteran Toolbox Program

Finding Your Path to Better Sleep

VA and DOD Collaboration offers Women's Health Transition Training

Community Partner News

For Your Information

The Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs does not endorse the organizations sponsoring these events, and we do not endorse the views they express or the products/services they offer.  The views and opinions expressed in any referenced document do not necessarily state or reflect those of MDVA.  The information provided is intended for your general knowledge only, and serves solely as a MDVA community outreach effort.

Community News

Applications for Dog Tag Inc. Fellowship Program are accepted until October 1st.  Apply Now


Frederick Veteran Support Network

The Global Good Fund

We're honored to support U.S. veterans turned entrepreneurs in need of coaching, capital and mentorship through the 2020 Global Good Fund Fellowship.

Sponsored by the Smithfield Foundation, this program is designed to accelerate the business capabilities, professional growth and leadership skills of our nation's most innovative leaders. Apply now through 10/14: http://bit.ly/veteranentrepreneurs.

Community Calendar

September 13, 2019 - TODAY

Congressional Black Caucus Veterans Braintrust, Washington, DC

September 14, 2019

Defenders' Day at Ft. McHenry, Baltimore

2019 Resilience 5K Run, Walk and/or Ruck, Odenton More Information

September 15, 2019

Introduction to Hero Dogs

September 17, 2019

Veteran Owned Business Forum, Perryville

September 18, 2019

Community Job Fair, Ft. George G. Meade

September 19, 2019

TechExpo Top Secret Hiring Event, Linthicum

Introduction to Firearms Safety, Annapolis

September 21, 2019

Southern Maryland Slam to benefit Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Bushwood

Military Spouse Networking Reception, Ft. George G. Meade

September 22, 2019

Travis Manion Foundation, 9/11 Heroes Run, Run Locations in Annapolis and Baltimore

September 24, 2019

Frederick Veteran Support Network Meeting, Frederick

September 25, 2019

Military Spouse Networking Reception, Ft. Meade

September 27, 2019

Veteran Resource Day, Morningside

September 28, 2019

Veteran Home Buyer Boot Camp, Annapolis

September 29, 2019

Blue Mass, Sponsored by Maryland Catholic War Veterans, Baltimore

Last Vet Motorsports Event of the Year, Kentland

October 3, 2019

How to Have an Awesome First Appointment, Project Opportunity, Salisbury

October 5, 2019

Veterans Resource Fair, Prince Frederick

October 7, 2019

Voices of Vets 2nd Annual Voice Raiser, Columbia

October 10, 2019

Employer Workshop, Becoming Veteran Friendly, Salisbury

Ft. Meade SFL-TAP Employer Hiring Day, Ft. Meade

October 11, 2019

Veteran Authors Book Signing Event, Berlin

October 12, 2019

Intensive Military and Veterans Writing Workshop, Salisbury, Note: Workshop continues on October 13th.

October 15, 2019

2019 County Executive's Small Business Summit, Jessup


Photos from Around the State

Mack Conyers photo

Carole Lewis, Director of Marketing at Charlotte Hall Veterans Home, provided an information table on Charlotte Hall at the VA Medical Center in Washington, DC.  While there, she presented the Vietnam Veteran Lapel Pin to Mr. Mack Conyers.  Mr. Conyers served in the United States Army.

Carole was honored to also present a Vietnam Veteran Lapel Pin to Mr. Ronald Bennafield, who served in the United States Air Force.

Ronald Bennafield photo
Charlotte Hall Staff Photo

Two other staff members from Charlotte Hall Veterans Home, were also at the VA Medical Center to collaborate on patient care with the VA medical staff.  Shown in this photo are: Renee Nordstrom, Mental Health Coordinator, Carole Lewis, and Michelle Cariaso, Quality Assurance Manager.  The goal is improved patient care.

Carole also presented a Vietnam Veteran Lapel Pin to Mr. Joseph Johnson, who served in Vietnam, as a member of the United States Army.

Joseph Johnson photo