Archive for President’s Corner

New location of President’s Corner “Notes”

Since our newsletter is now available in a printable, color version with a mass-emailed link, the newest “President’s Corner” notes can now be found on the first page of all newsletters at the “Chapter Newsletters” sidebar topic.

Top 25 VVA chapters – can we overtake AL?

Greetings brothers and sisters,

Well, it has been a very long winter and hopefully it is coming to an end now. The chapter has been very busy with meetings and getting ready for our election and “Welcome Home” celebration. This will be the first one since it officially became a holiday.
We will have our election at our April meeting, so plan on being there. We will elect a president, senior vice president, junior vice president, treasurer, secretary and 3 board directors, plus our delegates to the State Council meeting and election. The council meeting is tied in with the veterans celebration in Deadwood on May 2,3,4
One other thing: we are selling raffle tickets for the elk hunt and the fishing trip,
so please sell and turn in your tickets. The money we raise is what makes it possible to help needy veterans. And that, plus honoring our veterans are what we are about. Our Honor Guard does a fantastic job of that – they have been very busy at funerals and have logged a lot of miles. They are still in need of new members. If you would like to join them, contact Floyd, Connie or Jerry.

Thanks for letting me be your president this last year.

Greetings brothers and sisters
Well, we have had a busy fall and early winter. In November we were at several Veteran Day programs throughout the area. In Watertown we had one of the largest turnouts ever and the speaker made mention of the picture of our Honor Guard standing in the falling snow honoring a deceased veteran. This really shows what we are all about serving our fellow veterans who need assistance while they are living and honoring them when they have passed. For all our members have done, I thank you.
During November we also rang bells for the Salvation Army and we had our Color Guard march in the Watertown Lighted Parade. We also had a float in the parade and were co sponsors of the warming house at the Winter Wonderland in City Park. Thanks to all who took part in these activities. Our Honor Guard was also at several funerals.
In December we donated money to help several area veterans in need of assistance for food or utility assistance. We donated about $4,000 to aid needy vets. This is made possible because of the money we raise with our Elk raffle and other fund raisers. We will be selling elk tickets in January, so please support our raffle by selling tickets. We also had a Christmas party after our December meeting and will be having ice cream at our January meeting which is being brought by  one of our members in honor of his birthday. We had another very good year and we kept growing but it is getting a little harder as we lose some members. So we need to reach out to attract new members to the benefits of joining  our chapter or other chapters in the state. For this, I thank you!
Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. See you at our next meeting.

Greetings brothers and sisters,

Summer is over and it was a very busy one for us as we were involved in a lot of activities. We hosted the S.D. VVA State Council meeting at the new Armory – what a beautiful facility. Also in the morning of the state council meeting we had the Agent Orange Town Hall Meeting. Jack Kempter and Maynard Kadlivik put on a tremendous meeting.  There were over 80 people that attended and I believe that with the help of the VSOs that were present, a lot of people were helped with some very good information. We even had a gentleman from Texas that stopped in and gave a testimonial to be used by the Agent Orange Committee. The next State Council meeting will be held in May with a veterans reunion at the same time in Deadwood.  We’ll give more information when the date and location are finalized.

By the time you get this letter, hopefully, the government is back functioning.
Until then, we need to make sure we are available to help any veteran that might not get counseling or education assistance of disability payments while our government is closed.

One other point I want to bring up is that we need to remember that we are all brothers and sisters united by our membership in the VVA. We need to support all of our brothers and sisters that are in need of help or support even though we may not like them or agree with them or do not like what they have done. We need to unite in support of all veterans. We are not all well and a lot of us have some major medical or mental problems, but we still need to support each other.

Thanks Rollie

Greetings brothers and sisters.

I just returned from the VVA national convention in Jacksonville Florida. As this was my first convention and the first time we sent a delegate, I was not sure what to expect, but it was a fantastic experience. The VVA now has 70,000 members and there were 795 delegates there plus the AVVA had their convention concurrent with the VVA. We had nominated our chapter for 4 awards: newsletter, website, chapter of the year and Don Reconnu for member of the year. I also ran for director at large, so I was kept very busy talking to caucus and met a lot of good people. I believe we really amazed a lot of people when I told them we were only 2 years old and had 320 members. I did not win a seat on the board but I did have several people support me and ask that I come back in 2 years and run again. The best part of the convention was when they announced that Don Reconnu won the member of the year award. So for a chapter a little over 2 years old, we did quite well with Don winning and also telling our success story of membership. This is all because of our members and all your hard work and support – for this I thank you.

The convention really makes you aware of what the VVA is and all it has accomplished for all veterans – not just the Vietnam Veterans. We were entitled to 6 delegates because of our membership, South Dakota was entitled to 11 including our 6 and we had 2 delegates present. The next Convention will be 2015 in Springfield Illinois, so start to think about attending. Next year the leadership conference will be in Wichita. Both of these are much closer than Jacksonville, so hopefully we can have more attend. Let me just close in that the convention was a lot of fun for me and my wife, so if you have any questions, just ask me at the meeting,

Thank you,

Greetings brothers and sisters.
    We are finally in the start of summer after it looked like it was not going to come in April and May. Now we have a very busy summer ahead of us. We had our 2nd annual banquet and auction. We did quite well as we even got 20 dollars for a nail – good job, Dennis! The band was great and I believe everybody enjoyed themselves; we also got more members.
    We continue to grow and get noticed in the community because of all of you. Our Color Guard was at the Memorial Day program and our firing squad did an awesome job sounding like one rifle in unison. We have a lot of events coming up this summer.    We are thinking of hosting the State Council meeting in September or October. We are also sending delegates to National Convention in August. I am running as an at-large board of director for National – should be interesting to see how things go. If anybody has anything they would like me to promote or ask about at National, let me know.
    The Elk hunt raffle is still going on; so keep selling tickets. We also have a raffle on a Quilt starting. Our state council is having a raffle to help themselves get some money so they can be more active as a state council.  Our 4 chapters are all selling raffle tickets for two 2-day fishing trips – one on the Missouri River and another in Northeast S.D. lakes. The winner gets 1st choice and the runner-up the other one. Hopefully we will have these tickets and be selling them by the time you get this Newsletter.
Remember – recruit and renew as life members, as this will keep our chapter  growing.