Illinois Dept. of Veterans' Affairs Newsletter            January 2014
The IDVA Newsletter was delayed due to technical reasons.  
We apologize for the delay. 


IDVA Year in Review...


State support for Illinois veterans remained strong in 2013.  


Last year, we at IDVA provided great care to over 900 residents in our four Veterans' Homes; gained funding support for the Chicago Veterans Home; and built partnerships and programs to reach more Illinois veterans, to make military training count on campus and for state licenses, and to assist veteran entrepreneurs


Our Veteran Service Officers helped thousands of Illinois veterans and family members with claims, resulting in their receiving $86,000,000 in VA benefits, including $43,000,000 in retroactive benefits for 2013 alone.  Meanwhile, we helped Illinois Joining Forces grow and mature, building a navigable, collaborative system of support for Illinois veterans and their families.  


We helped with veteran hiring fairs, training and events.  We championed women veteran events and we strove to lay the groundwork...  


... and the Way Forward 


For 2014, our four strategic priorities will continue to be: 


Expand and leverage partnerships in serving veterans

Improve outreach to veterans;  

-  Address veteran employment challenges

Continue to improve the effectiveness of existing programs


In the year to come, a few of our initiatives under these priorities include direct, intensive outreach to recently separated veterans in targeted rural areas; a multi-agency effort of state educational partners to articulate military training in select, high-density career fields and against educational requirements on campus; and the creation of digital connectivity and electronic claims submission with the new USDVA electronic claims system.


How can you help?  Get involved.  Encourage other Veterans to Stand Up and Be Counted


Illinois Joining Forces

Important Update 


IJF is a statewide network of veteran- and military-serving organizations working together to serve Illinois' Veterans better.  Now more than 170 organizations, the IJF network is growing in size and productivity, with our Working Groups taking on important 

collaborative initiatives.


IJF recently launched version 2.0 of the IJF website, through which Illinois Service Members, Veterans, and their Families can better search for and connect directly with local support and services. There is no cost for these services and individuals do NOT have to sign-up to use the "Find Resources" section of the website to search for services and programs from IJF member organizations - or to receive help directly the IJF Support Team in finding the right resource.  Check out the site today - and spread the word to your veteran networks!

Veteran of the Month - December 2013

Larry Trapani, Sr.  

Larry Trapani, Sr. - a U.S. Army veteran, distinguished veteran leader, and retired State of Illinois employee - was recognized as the Illinois Veteran of the Month for December 2013 at a ceremony in Springfield on Tuesday, Dec. 17.     

His commitment to his local community through various volunteer and civic activities is best exemplified with his service on the Board of St. Mary's Star of the Sea, on the Board of St. Rita's High School in Chicago, and as the Immediate Past President of the Roman Cultural Society.  Trapani's Army experience included service in the United States and Europe as a military policeman from 1965-1967.

 Veteran of the Month - January 2014

John R. Carr 

 On Wednesday Jan. 22, John R. Carr, a decorated Vietnam War U.S. Army veteran, veteran leader, and the former  Superintendent of the Veterans Assistance Commission of Kane County, was recognized as the Illinois Veteran of the Month for January 2014.     
The ceremony was attended by a capacity audience at the Kane County Government Center, Geneva, Illinois, with IDVA Assistant Director Rodrigo Garcia presenting the award.  

The Illinois Veteran of the Month Award is presented to veterans who continue to serve their communities after leaving the military and make a real difference in the lives of others. To nominate a veteran for consideration, please visit the IDAV website and learn how to nominate a veteran!

Your IDVA Calendar  


Feb. 12             Lincoln's Birthday - State Offices Closed


Feb. 17             Presidents' Day - State Offices Closed


Feb. 26             Homeless Summit - Capt. James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center, 

                 North Chicago, IL


Feb. 28             Desert Shield/Desert Storm Remembrance Event - Illinois Military Museum,

                        Springfield, IL


  Illinois Veteran of the Month Ceremony - Illinois Military Museum,

  Springfield, IL


March 9-10       Orion Midwest Regional Hiring Conference - Chicago IL


March 26          Hiring Our Heroes Hiring Fair - Chicago, IL


April 8              Hiring Our Heroes Hiring Fair - St Louis, MO


April 24            Hiring Our Heroes Hiring Fair - Evansville, IN 


April 29            Hiring Our Heroes Hiring Fair - Chicago, IL


May 26             Memorial Day


June 5              Hiring Our Heroes Hiring Fair - Peoria, IL

 Events Subject to Change

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