Tuesday, February 12, 2008

New Members Appointed to VA Panel on Minority Veterans

New Members Appointed to VA Panel on Minority Veterans

Peake: Members Represent "Diversity of America"

WASHINGTON (February 12, 2008) -- The Secretary of Veterans Affairs has announced the appointment of six new members to the Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans, an expert panel that advises him on issues involving minority veterans.

"These new members are veterans who represent the diversity of America and are recognized authorities in areas pertinent to the needs of our veterans," said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James B. Peake.

Chartered on January 30, 1995, the committee makes recommendations for administrative and legislative changes. The committee members are appointed to one-, two-, or three-year terms.

The new committee members include retired Army Col. Dr. Doris Browne of Washington D.C.; Army Reserve Lt. Col. Dr. Irene M. Zoppi of Crofton, Md.; retired Marine Master Gunnery Sgt. Furnie Lambert, Jr. of Maxton, N.C.; retired Air Force Senior Master Sgt. John W. Jelks of Dale City, Va.; retired Army Spc. and former POW Shoshana N. Johnson of El Paso, Texas and Navy veteran Alexander Y. Chan of Fairfax Station, Va.

There are approximately 4.7 million minority veterans in the United States and its territories. They make up nearly 19 percent of the total veteran population.

VA has minority veterans program coordinators at each VA medical center, regional office and national cemetery to assist minority veterans with health and benefits issues.

A list of the full membership of VA's Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans is attached.


VA Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans

* Diego E. Hernandez, Puerto Rican, Miami, Fla., a retired Navy vice admiral, currently is an active consultant to private and public companies.

* James H. Mukoyama, Jr. (Chair), Japanese American, Glenview, Ill. A retired Army Reserve major general, currently the executive vice president and chief operating officer of Regal Discount Securities in Chicago.

* Julia J. Cleckley, African American, Washington, DC. A retired Army brigadier general, currently is the director of armed forces education with the University Alliance.

* Dr. Doris Browne, African American, Washington, DC. A retired Army colonel, currently the senior scientific officer of the Breast and Gynecologic Cancer Research Group, Division of Cancer Prevention, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Md.

* Reginald Malebranche, Haitian American, Alexandria, Va. A retired Army colonel with over thirty-five years of expertise in policy, planning and program management.

* Kerwin E. Miller, African American, Washington, DC. A retired Navy commander, currently serves as the first director of the newly-established District of Columbia office of veterans affairs, within the executive office of the mayor.

* Joe C. Nuñez, Mexican American, Littleton, Colo. A retired Air Force lieutenant colonel, currently works for the Department of Health and Human Services as a Regional Director.

* Dr. Irene M. Zoppi, Hispanic American, Crofton, Md. An Army Reserve lieutenant colonel, currently an adjunct professor at the College of Notre Dame, Strayer University, and the Command General Staff College.

* Furnie Lambert, Jr., American Indian of the Lumbee Tribe, Maxton, N.C. A retired Marine master gunnery sergeant, currently serves as the chairman of Veterans Affairs Committee for the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina.

* John W. Jelks, African American, Dale City, Va. A retired Air Force senior master sergeant, currently the coordinator for National Geospatial Intelligence Agency.

* Debra L. Wilson, Lakota Sioux, Tahlequah, Okla. A former Marine Corps staff sergeant, currently works as a compliance officer for the Cherokee Nation gaming commission.

* Nelson N. Angapak, Sr., Alaskan Native, Anchorage, Ala. An Army veteran, currently is the executive vice president of the Alaska Federation of Natives.

* Shoshana N. Johnson, Black Hispanic American, El Paso, Texas. A retired Army specialist who is the first black female POW in the U.S. history and currently conducts speaking engagements across the country discussing her experience as a POW in Iraq.

* Alexander Y. Chan, Asian American, Fairfax Station, Va. A Navy veteran, currently a senior enforcement officer and certified internal auditor in the Federal Communications Commission's Enforcement Bureau.

* James T. McLawhorn, Jr., African American, Columbia, S.C. Currently the president and chief executive officer of the Columbia Urban League in South Carolina.
# # #

I congratulate all of these veterans on their selection to this board, I look forward to them making a positive impact for all veterans, and am pleasantly surprised to see Shoshana Johnson as one of the appointees, as a POW she was introduced to the nation upon her rescue and return to the US. She is an inspitation to all Americans, and am glad to see one of my fellow Columbia SC residents has also been appointed James T. McLawhorn Jr. SALUTE to you all

Sphere: Related Content

No comments: