Paralyzed Veterans of America national president Al Kovach Jr., (right), along with acting executive director Sherman Gillums Jr., (left) are joined by Dept., of Veterans Affairs secretary Bob McDonald (right standing) during the 2016 Gordon H. Mansfield Congressional Leadership Award presentation to Rep. Jeff Miller, Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs (left standing). Photo Christopher DiVirgilio.
Paralyzed Veterans of America honors chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
In a ceremony March 3, 2016, Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) presented Rep. Jeff Miller, Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, with its 2016 Gordon H. Mansfield Congressional Leadership Award. Chairman Miller has led the efforts to reform the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and has tirelessly worked to expand access to health care services for veterans, including through community providers. His work has included continuously updating the Choice program to ensure veterans have the best, timeliest health care options. Chairman Miller has also rightly pushed for proper accountability for many VA senior executives who have been derelict in the performance of their duties.
“We’re proud to present Chairman Miller with this award. He has elevated reform of the VA, particularly the health care system, to a level never considered by Congress in the past,” said Al Kovach Jr., national president of Paralyzed Veterans of America. “Chairman Miller has consistently worked to ensure that veterans can get timely access to high quality health care in the most appropriate setting. He has also advocated for strong accountability for those employees, particularly at the senior executive level, who have jeopardized the delivery of health care and benefits services to veterans.”
The Gordon H. Mansfield Congressional Leadership Award is named for the Honorable Gordon Mansfield, former Acting Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Executive Director of Paralyzed Veterans. The award reflects upon his services as the former Assistant Secretary for Congressional and Legislative Affairs at the VA, and Paralyzed Veterans’ first associate executive director of government relations. The late Mr. Mansfield was a combat-injured Vietnam veteran who was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
Chairman Jeff Miller was notified personally of the award earlier this year, and remembered its namesake: "Gordon Mansfield was a hero both on and off the battlefield, whose accomplishments and resilience inspired all who knew him. It's incredibly humbling to receive an award that bears his name.”
“I want to thank Paralyzed Veterans of America for this honor as well as its exceptional advocacy for America's veterans," he continued. “PVA's advice and counsel to the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs has been vitally important in our efforts to improve veteran experiences and increase accountability and efficiency at the Department of Veterans Affairs. I am looking forward to continuing our partnership with PVA in 2016 and beyond.”
Gallery photos by Christopher DiVirgilio / PN Online staff.