VA Center for Women Veterans celebrates 25th anniversary

Female soldier discusses something during support group

WASHINGTON, DC — For a quarter century the VA center for Women Veterans has been working to ensure American’s women Veterans are receiving equal access to VA programs. This month they celebrate their 25th anniversary at VA headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Established by Congress in November 1994, the Center monitors VA’s administration of benefits and services to women Veterans.

VA Secretary Robert Wilkie said in the opening remarks at the commemorative ceremony, “The Center serves an important role in how VA addresses the evolving needs of women Veterans — from identifying ways that VA can enhance its benefits and services — to creating initiatives that demonstrate the stellar contributions of women Veterans. The Center has also shown great commitment honoring the legacy of the women who serve.” 

Retired U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. Irene Trowell-Harris, the center’s longest serving former director; Retired U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 5, Phyllis Wilson, current president of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial Foundation; author and women Veterans rights advocate, Erin Miller; and Elizabeth Estabrooks, Oregon Women Veterans coordinator and pioneer of the “I Am Not Invisible” campaign were also acknowledged at the ceremony.

Wilkie also touted The Center’s accomplishments which included: operationalizing and managing VA’s Women Veterans Program (WVP), comprised of representatives from VA’s administrations and staff offices, to enhance the delivery of VA benefits and services; establishing public and non-profit partnerships, to improve understanding of VA’s benefits, services and processes; creating national initiatives to promote cultural transformation in VA and the public, and to encourage women Veterans to self-identify as Veterans; and providing support to VA’s Advisory Committee on Women Veterans, which was created to advise the VA’s secretary on the needs of women Veterans.

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