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,