Fairgoers are invited to meet and greet legislators and weigh in on hot political topics during their visit to the House of Representatives booth at the state fair.
Take a “selfie,” a “twofie” or a formal portrait to post on social media as you grab the gavel and stand behind a replica of the House speaker’s desk. Complete with flags and the Abraham Lincoln portrait, the display gives you a feel for what it is like to stand in this position of power. Be sure to find out the fascinating history behind the portrait.
Vettes for Vets visited the Minneapolis Veterans Homes Sunday, August 17.
For this month’s article I have decided to take a more serious tone as to the role we all played in caring for our Veterans. First of all, I congratulate the Veterans Service Organizations for successful conferences and their continuing work in caring for Veterans. In some cases, the attendance was lighter than desired, but the leadership ensured the organization continued going in the right direction.
I am extremely proud to play a small part in making Minnesota a better place for all Veterans. And, as always, I am especially grateful to the auxiliaries for their work. I have always considered them to be the rock upon which many organizations are built.
When talking about leadership, I often use the analogy of a book that I have read. The title of the book was “The Red Badge of Courage.” The story was about a young man during the Civil War. During a battle he became frightened and ran. In doing so, he fell hitting his head on a rock which caused it to bleed. As the story goes he got connected to another unit and when they saw the blood stained bandage on his head they assumed he had been in battle. Since they were fearful, they looked to him as a leader. The story builds on how others trust in him helped him to overcome his fears and move on to be the leader they had envisioned.
On July 8 Hilton Hotels in Minnesota joined three other states in a new program that provides accommodations to Veterans searching for jobs outside of their residential area. Hilton Worldwide and the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA) have partnered with the state of Minnesota to assist military Veterans with finding fulfilling jobs. The HHonors Military program was designed to give back to military service personnel through providing HHonors points to eligible transitioning service members, Veterans, and military spouses. By becoming a HHonors Military member, Veterans will receive a 100,000 point donation to their account. These points can be redeemed to support travel expenses related to job-search activities.
As another legislation session comes to a close, several new measures to honor our Veterans have been achieved. On July 16, Governor Dayton invited the public to a ceremonial signing of a new bill passed in the last session to fund construction of a Hmong-Lao Veterans Memorial in the Capitol Area. The memorial will honor all Hmong-Lao Veterans of the war in Laos who were allied with the American forces during the Vietnam War. State leaders designed $450,000 to complete the design and construction of the new memorial. This appropriation is only available after at least $90,000 has been committed to the project from non-state sources.
As the state’s primary source of Veteran resources, the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs has become a go-to source for Veteran news and information. Our team is constantly striving to provide Veterans with the resources they need to make informed decisions. The MDVA legislative team has created a series of tools meant to be an informative and educational resource for staying up-to-date on the constantly changing Veteran-specific laws and policies. These tools are evolving from month to month, and will continue to be improved, as we work toward the goal of better serving our heroes. Below is a short summary of the tools we currently offer.
On Wednesday July 9, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) hosted Minnesota’s 8th annual Veterans Career Fair at the Earle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center. As the largest Veterans career fair in Minnesota, this event was made possible through a partnership with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs and various corporate sponsors and service providers.
Upon entering the Hastings Veterans Home woodshop, one is greeted with the strong aroma of freshly cut wood accompanied with the consistent clamor of men hard at work. Mike Kriel, the Woodshop Coordinator, steps proudly into the room and states with a smile, “Welcome to my playground.”
CommonBond Communities, the Midwest’s largest nonprofit provider of affordable housing, recently held a ceremonial groundbreaking event for new Fort Snelling development project. On May 29 the organization invited distinguished guests to celebrate the restoration and construction of a new affordable housing community for Veterans and their families experiencing homelessness. The development project will transform five historic structures into 58 new apartments on the Fort Snelling Upper Post.