[Hpn] VA Commission to Seek New Under Secretary for Benefits

William C. Tinker wtinker@verizon.net
Thu, 06 Mar 2008 15:05:53 -0500


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Recent VA News Releases

To view and download VA news release, please visit the following
Internet address:
http://www.va.gov/opa/pressrel


VA Commission to Seek New Under Secretary for Benefits

Peake: Candidate Must Have Commitment to Newest Combat Veterans

WASHINGTON (March 6, 2008) - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James B.
Peake has announced formation of a 10-member commission to recommend
candidates for the post of Under Secretary for Benefits with the
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

VA's Under Secretary for Benefits directs nearly 15,000 employees and
administers a budget of more than $45 billion dollars, mostly for
disability compensation and survivors' benefits.  The under secretary is
also responsible for VA's educational assistance, insurance program and
pensions.

"I have asked Deputy Secretary Gordon Mansfield to lead this important
effort," said Peake. "With a new generation of combat veterans returning
from Iraq and Afghanistan, the search commission must ensure we fill the
under secretary's job with a person having the right skills, experience,
vision and commitment to our nation's veterans."

The new under secretary will replace retired Navy Vice Adm. Daniel L.
Cooper, who announced his resignation recently after six years on the
job.  Cooper has been the longest-serving Under Secretary for Benefits
in VA's history.

The Under Secretary for Benefits is a non political appointment, subject
to Senate confirmation, who serves at the pleasure of the President.
Candidates must demonstrate ability both in fiscal management and in the
administration of programs of the Veterans Benefits Administration or of
similar content and scope.

Under federal law, the search commission must recommend at least three
candidates to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, who forwards the list
to the President along with any recommendations by the Secretary.

Members of the commission, in addition to Deputy Secretary Mansfield,
include Brian Chappelle, president of Potomac Partners and former
executive vice president of the Mortgage Bankers Association; Charles
Rowe, president of the National Association of State Approving Agencies;
Fran Hackett, from the Office of Servicemembers Group Life Insurance;
John F. Sommer, Jr., executive director of the American Legion; Homer
Townsend, acting executive director of Paralyzed Veterans of America;
James Bombard, chairman of VA's Veterans Advisory Committee on
Education; Tim S. McClain, former VA General Counsel; Guy McMichael,
former VA acting under secretary for benefits; and Daniel L. Cooper, VA
under secretary for benefits.  Willie Hensley, VA's deputy assistant
secretary for human resources management, will serve as the commission's
executive secretary.



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<DIV>Recent VA News Releases<BR><BR>To view and download VA news =
release, please=20
visit the following<BR>Internet address:<BR><A=20
href=3D"http://www.va.gov/opa/pressrel">http://www.va.gov/opa/pressrel</A=
><BR><BR><BR>VA=20
Commission to Seek New Under Secretary for Benefits</DIV>
<DIV><BR>Peake: Candidate Must Have Commitment to Newest Combat =
Veterans</DIV>
<DIV><BR>WASHINGTON (March 6, 2008) - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. =
James=20
B.<BR>Peake has announced formation of a 10-member commission to=20
recommend<BR>candidates for the post of Under Secretary for Benefits =
with=20
the<BR>Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).<BR><BR>VA's Under Secretary =
for=20
Benefits directs nearly 15,000 employees and<BR>administers a budget of =
more=20
than $45 billion dollars, mostly for<BR>disability compensation and =
survivors'=20
benefits.&nbsp; The under secretary is<BR>also responsible for VA's =
educational=20
assistance, insurance program and<BR>pensions.<BR><BR>"I have asked =
Deputy=20
Secretary Gordon Mansfield to lead this important<BR>effort," said =
Peake. "With=20
a new generation of combat veterans returning<BR>from Iraq and =
Afghanistan, the=20
search commission must ensure we fill the<BR>under secretary's job with =
a person=20
having the right skills, experience,<BR>vision and commitment to our =
nation's=20
veterans."<BR><BR>The new under secretary will replace retired Navy Vice =
Adm.=20
Daniel L.<BR>Cooper, who announced his resignation recently after six =
years on=20
the<BR>job.&nbsp; Cooper has been the longest-serving Under Secretary =
for=20
Benefits<BR>in VA's history.<BR><BR>The Under Secretary for Benefits is =
a non=20
political appointment, subject<BR>to Senate confirmation, who serves at =
the=20
pleasure of the President.<BR>Candidates must demonstrate ability both =
in fiscal=20
management and in the<BR>administration of programs of the Veterans =
Benefits=20
Administration or of<BR>similar content and scope.<BR><BR>Under federal =
law, the=20
search commission must recommend at least three<BR>candidates to the =
Secretary=20
of Veterans Affairs, who forwards the list<BR>to the President along =
with any=20
recommendations by the Secretary.<BR><BR>Members of the commission, in =
addition=20
to Deputy Secretary Mansfield,<BR>include Brian Chappelle, president of =
Potomac=20
Partners and former<BR>executive vice president of the Mortgage Bankers=20
Association; Charles<BR>Rowe, president of the National Association of =
State=20
Approving Agencies;<BR>Fran Hackett, from the Office of Servicemembers =
Group=20
Life Insurance;<BR>John F. Sommer, Jr., executive director of the =
American=20
Legion; Homer<BR>Townsend, acting executive director of Paralyzed =
Veterans of=20
America;<BR>James Bombard, chairman of VA's Veterans Advisory Committee=20
on<BR>Education; Tim S. McClain, former VA General Counsel; Guy=20
McMichael,<BR>former VA acting under secretary for benefits; and Daniel =
L.=20
Cooper, VA<BR>under secretary for benefits.&nbsp; Willie Hensley, VA's =
deputy=20
assistant<BR>secretary for human resources management, will serve as the =

commission's<BR>executive secretary.<BR></DIV>
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