NEWSLETTER
AUGUST 2020
COMMANDER'S CORNER
Matthew Kampainen, DAV WI Commander

Unity - the state of being one

When writing this article, I feel slightly akin to being Bill Murray in the movie “Ground Hog Day” as we continue to live the new normal of COVID-19. However, there has been some positive and upbeat news occurring as some of our Chapters are opening across the Badger State. During the meetings, members in attendance are adhering to the health precaution guidelines, which include wearing masks, using hand sanitizer, and conducting social distancing. Along with KC Johnson, Department Chief of Staff, I have been able to attend Chapter meetings. There is an old saying attributed to the English writer Rudyard Kipling “For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf and strength of the Wolf is the Pack.” I realize when meeting with our members, my strength, motivation, and desire are derived from their dedication, compassion, and commitment to the DAV mission. I thrive on sharing the updates that are occurring at the Department and National level while intently listening to the concerns of Chapter members. These are real “rubber meets the road” moments that demonstrate our organizational Unity.

Upon becoming your Commander, there were three areas that I wanted to focus on: 1) Empowerment, 2) Unity, and 3) Compassion. In my last article I provided my vision regarding Empowerment while, this article I would like to go more in-depth regarding “Unity.” When looking at the definition of Unity, it’s a simple yet complex target; a standard definition is as follows: “The state of being one; oneness.” While it may seem a straightforward idea to articulate, however, the challenge is making it a working entity within the culture. The critical components to achieving Unity within an organization falls upon fostering an environment based upon trust, sincerity, and open communication. As your Department Commander, I will personally take the lead and be the best example to facilitate Unity within the Chapter and Department level. It’s too easy to engage issues with an “Us versus Them” mentality. This type of approach sadly tends to cause division while not getting the results we wish to attain.
 
To reach the next level toward Unity, I pledge to you a completely open and transparent Department that works for its members and, ultimately, our committed mission to Veterans. I know I’m boastful, but I genuinely believe that we have the best Department in the history of our organization. I want to offer the Department resources and tools to be of assistance toward the growth of our Chapters across the State of Wisconsin. An example: if you are struggling with financial reports or have a new Treasurer, Our Department and Deputy Treasurer will gladly be of assistance. We have a phenomenal Women Veterans Committee; if you need the latest information regarding our fastest-growing group of Veterans, our Committee Chairperson will gladly help you out. If you need assistance with membership, our Department Senior Vice Commander will be there. We have excellent District Executive Committee persons, who are a wealth of knowledge and experience that live within your Chapter area.

In closing, let us aim our sights to the target of Unity. As the old military adage so eloquently states, “One Team, One Fight.”
2020 DAV NATIONAL STATEMENT
DAV to host virtual gathering on August 26 at 6 pm CT. Learn More.
2020 DAV CENTENNIAL CELEBRATION
DAV cancels Centennial Celebration's fall events in Cincinnati area. Learn More.
STATE OF WISCONSIN:
COVID-19 UPDATE
As COVID cases rise, Governor declares public health emergency. Learn More.
WISCONSIN VETERANS HOMES - COVID-19 UPDATE
WDVA: The Fight Against COVID-19 in WI Veterans Homes. Learn More.
COVID-19 SUMMARY
Status of COVID-19 in VA, WI VAMC's, in state and nation. Learn More.
BENEFITS
DAV, VBA to hold tele-Town Hall on August 19, 3 pm CT, on Benefits. See Video.
TRANSPORTATION
Find out what is happening with DAV Wisconsin Transportation. Learn More.
COMMANDER'S ACTION NETWORK (CAN)
See DAV CAN Action Alerts for late July/August. Take Action.
EMPLOYMENT
DAV WI, VA, DWD, WEDC, Vets Chamber to honor vet employers. Learn More.
MEMBERSHIP
2020-2021 Membership Program. Learn More.
WOMEN VETERANS
With women veterans, VA needs a culture change. Learn More.
LOCAL VETERANS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
August LVAP Report. Learn More.
BENEFITS PROTECTION TEAM LEADER WEBINAR
DAV Critical Policy Goals: Update Watch Webinar.
DAV TESTIMONY
DAV testifies on women veterans issues and pending legislation. Learn More.
DAV AUXILIARY
Auxiliary Commander Report for August. Learn More.
2020 ELECTION - VISION FOR VETERANS
Educating candidates, lawmakers on top DAV priorities. Learn More.
2020 ELECTION - DO'S AND DON'TS
DAV is nonpartisan - Dos and Don'ts for our members. Learn More.
CENSUS
Why the Census is important! Learn More.
FROM THE DAV DEPARTMENT ADJUTANT LARRY HILL

Comrades, this week we will be deciding on the Fall Conference. I know there are several that would like us to do the Conference. I will be sharing with the Executive Committee the information I am collecting from the Health Department, Holiday Inn, and others to provide them the latest on COVID-19. At our monthly FONCON this Thursday they will be providing their recommendations to the Commander. We will notify the Department members once a decision is made.

The Chapter Annual Finical Report (AFR) is due by 30 September. Get them done and get them in to us. Should you need help call for assistance.

GOOD NEWS: the Tomah VA Golf Course is now open and operational for the residents. The public is not allowed to play at this time. Once the Tomah VA opens again, the public will be welcome.
As the Department moves forward, we will be looking at new ways of doing business and using technology available to us. It is of paramount importance that all Chapters be as technology-smart as possible. More and more information is being disseminated electronically. This is faster, improves communications, and saves money at all levels. I also believe that we can conduct some committee meetings and do training this way. To obtain training, and do meetings all one needs is a computer, iPad, or smart phone, and internet connection. Most households have one of these devices on hand. 

Yes, we must examine what is the need, why it’s needed, who needs it, and best method to deliver. This will be especially important should we not have our Fall Conference. More on this subject next month. Stay safe. 
Wisconsin DAV Headquarters
1253 Scheuring Road Suite A
De Pere, WI 54115
Phone: 920.338.8620
Fax: 920.338.8621
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