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Appointee or career, VA’s officials can take the agency to excellence

Posted By ROA National Staff, Monday, October 22, 2018

ROA Executive Director Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Jeff Phillips is published in The Hill as an opinion contributor.


“Now led by its tenth “permanent” secretary, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is in its 29th year of being nearly everyone’s favorite federal punching bag.


Secretary Robert Wilkie appears right for the job, with experience as a House and Senate staffer, National Security Council official, Pentagon official, and a serving Air Force Reserve officer.


His success leading the nearly 400,000-person agency largely depends on the performance of VA’s thousands of supervisory federal civil servants. The VA budget grew from about $49 billion in 2001, when I joined VA as an appointee running its public affairs and White House liaison shops, to some $200 billion today — clearly Congress has funded VA for success.”



Tags:  VA  Veterans Affairs  Wilkie