VA Center for Women Veterans celebrates 25th anniversary

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ Center for Women Veterans commemorated 25 years of providing dedicated advocacy for America’s women veterans Nov. 7 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 to ensure they receive equal access to VA programs.

“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,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “The center has also shown great commitment honoring the legacy of the women who serve.”

The commemorative opening remarks came from the secretary, there was acknowledgement of the center’s accomplishments and recognition of special guests including: 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.

Center accomplishments:

– Operationalizing and managing VA’s Women Veterans Program, comprised of representatives from VA’s administrations and staff offices, to enhance the delivery of VA benefits and services.
– Establishing public and nonprofit 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.
– 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.
– Visit the Center for Women Veterans’ initiatives and the Advisory Committee on Women Veterans for more information.