WDVA E-Newsletter February 2024 Issue

WDVA E-news Header image - March 2023


Valentines For Veterans

Sec Bond with resident at King for Valentines Day 2.14.24

Thousands of Valentine Day cards were hand delivered to veterans and members living in our Homes in Chippewa Falls, King, and Union Grove for last week. Cards were mailed in from as far away as Alaska and Maine. Secretary-designee James Bond travelled to our Veterans Home at King to personally deliver some of these cards and talk to residents on Valentine's Day.

This is the third year the WDVA marketing and outreach team has coordinated this effort. Shannon Miller, Marketing and Outreach Supervisor who leads this annual effort, says it's a great opportunity to spread some cheer to veterans during this time of year.

"We received around 30,000 Valentines for our members, which we sorted into 450 bags of cards we delivered to members at our three homes," Miller said. "Each of our members received dozens of Valentine's Day cards in each gift bag. It was wonderful just see them feel the love and be appreciated by people whom they have never met."

WDVA is grateful to all the schools, youth groups, community organizations, veterans service organizations, churches, and caring individuals who took the time to help us deliver some love for the veterans in our Homes.

View more pictures from our Valentine's for Veterans efforts this year on our Flickr picture album here

*Pictured above: WDVA Secretary-designee James Bond delivers gift bags of Valentine's cards to residents at our Wisconsin Veterans Home in King on Valentine's Day. He shook hands, talked to them, and thanked them for their service.  

February is Black History Month

WDVA 2024 Black History Month image

The Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs is proud to salute the dedication and sacrifice of generations of African Americans who have served, and continue to serve, in our nation's military during Black History Month. 

Our Wisconsin Veterans Museum has many unique and important Black veteran histories in their collections including that of Anna Mae Robertson, of Milwaukee, WI.

Anna Mae served in the only all-female battalion deployed overseas during World War II as part of the Women's Army Corps 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion. Better known as the "six-triple-eight," it was also the first female African-American battalion in the Army at that time. Given only six months to sort through hundreds of thousands of pieces of mail in Birmingham, England, they did it in three.

In March 2022, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that was signed by President Joe Biden to award the Battalion the Congressional Gold Medal to Anna Mae and the 6888, one of the highest civilian honors in the United States. Learn more about her unique and important story and others at our Museum's website.

*Pictured above is the 6888th upon their arrival in England in 1945.

VORP's Nikki Sherman Delivers Support and Compassion for Veterans in Her Region

Nikki Sherman VORP region 5 and VORP Map image together

WDVA often hears stories from veterans who have gotten through very difficult times with help from our Veteran Outreach and Recovery Program (VORP). We wanted to share one recent story from a veteran who worked with VORP Region 5 Coordinator Nikki Sherman (pictured below). Nikki works with veterans residing in Barron, Burnett, Polk, Rusk, St. Croix, and Washburn counties. 

“I was having a huge mental crisis, and my PTSD symptoms were pretty much out of control. It was a nightmare. Nikki came to my rescue and saved my life. She is an angel, as far as I'm concerned. Her compassion and knowledge of how to help me was amazing. She got me into the right place and programs. She followed through on everything and was with me throughout my ordeal. If not for her and others, I don't know what would have happened to me. People like her and programs to help veterans like me are essential and definitely needed.”

The VORP team includes 16 Regional Veterans Outreach and Recovery Regional Coordinators located within their assigned region, two supervisors based in Madison, and four clinical coordinators. WDVA is grateful for the efforts of Nikki and her colleagues in helping veterans get connected with local and regional resources they need when experiencing a personal crisis. 

Visit the VORP webpage to view a map of our 16 regional coordinators and find their contact information. Learn more about how VORP services can help you or a veteran in need today.

Secretary Bond Speaks at VFW Mid-Winter Conference in Wisconsin Rapids

Sec Bond speaks at VFW Midwinter conference Feb 3 2024

WDVA Secretary-designee James Bond was pleased to accept the invitation from Commander Ron Ramos to speak at the Wisconsin VFW Mid-Winter Conference on Saturday, February 3rd in Wisconsin Rapids. He gave keynote remarks and congratulated them on their 125th anniversary as a veteran service organization, their mission of giving back and advocating for veterans and their families and provided updates on Department priorities for the coming year. He also expressed his appreciation for the strong working partnership between VFW and WDVA in serving and meeting the needs of veterans and families in Wisconsin. 

Pictured above is Secretary Bond speaking at the podium with the Wisconsin VFW State Leadership on the left at their Mid-Winter Conference on February 3, 2024. 

Find Your New Career with WDVA!

Finance Manager WDVA Central Office Feb 2024

Are you looking for a new career opportunity? WDVA is looking for great people to help us serve our veterans in Wisconsin. Our featured job this month is for a Financial Management Supervisor at our Central Offices located in Madison, WI 

WDVA has many more available job openings across our state which includes various positions at our veteran memorial cemeteries, skilled caregivers at veteran homes, and administrative staff at our offices in Milwaukee and Madison. To view all available openings, and how to apply, please visit www.wisc.jobs today!