VFW Statement on VA Secretary Nomination

Obama nominates Robert McDonald for VA Secretary

“Leadership, management and accountability are the only requirements the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States has ever demanded from the Department of Veterans Affairs,” said VFW National Commander William A. Thien.   

“The VA is experiencing a crisis in care and confidence, and whoever is confirmed as its secretary must immediately identify and fix what’s broken, hold employees appropriately accountable to the fullest extent of the law, and do whatever is necessary to restore the faith of veterans in their VA.  

“Nominee Robert McDonald’s experience leading complex organizations will be a plus, since the VA is ultimately in the service industry and needs to be run like a business. However, the VA is also unlike any organization in the private sector because it’s led by political appointees in Washington but managed entirely by federal civilians in the field. We need a VA secretary who can change an organization with many internal loyalties into a culture where properly serving America’s veterans becomes the only definition of mission success or failure. The VFW hopes Mr. McDonald is up to that challenge, and we look forward to working with him once he is confirmed.”