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United States Secretary of Veterans Affairs

The United States Secretary of Veterans' Affairs is the head of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, the department in charge of taking care of the affairs of war veterans. The Secretary is a member of the Cabinet and second to last at 17th in the line of succession to the presidency (the position was last until the United States Department of Homeland Security was added in 2006[1]). To date, all appointees and acting appointees to the post have been United States military veterans, but that is not a requirement to fill the position.

Secretary of Veterans Affairs of the United States of America
Seal of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (1989–2012).svg
Seal of the Department of Veterans Affairs
Flag of the United States Secretary of Veterans Affairs.svg
Flag of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Robert Wilkie official portrait.jpg
Incumbent
Robert Wilkie

since July 30, 2018
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Member ofCabinet
Reports toThe President
SeatWashington, D.C.
AppointerThe President
with Senate advice and consent
Term lengthNo fixed term
Constituting instrument38 U.S.C. § 303
FormationMarch 15, 1989
First holderEd Derwinski
SuccessionSixteenth
(Presidential Line of Succession)
DeputyDeputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs
SalaryExecutive Schedule, level 1
Websitewww.VA.gov

When the position of Secretary is vacant, the United States Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs[2] or another person picked by the President serves as Acting Secretary[2] until the President picks and the United States Senate confirms a new Secretary.

On December 8, 2008, President Barack Obama announced that he would pick retired army General Eric Shinseki to be the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. He was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate on January 20, 2009.[3] General Shinseki resigned as Secretary of Veterans Affairs on May 30, 2014, making deputy secretary Sloan Gibson the acting secretary. On June 29, 2014, former Procter & Gamble CEO Robert A. McDonald was nominated by Barack Obama as the next secretary.

In May 2018, President Donald Trump nominated then-acting Secretary Robert Wilkie to serve the full position. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on July 23, 2018.

List of Secretaries of Veterans AffairsEdit

No. Name Portrait Term of Office President(s) served under
1 Ed Derwinski   March 15, 1989 – September 26, 1992 George H. W. Bush
2 Jesse Brown   January 22, 1993 – July 3, 1997 Bill Clinton
3 Togo D. West, Jr.   January 2, 19981 – July 25, 2000
- Hershel W. Gober2   July 25, 2000 – January 20, 2001
4 Anthony Principi   January 23, 2001 – January 26, 2005 George W. Bush
5 Jim Nicholson   January 26, 2005 – October 1, 2007
6 LT GEN (Ret.) James Peake   December 20, 2007 – January 20, 2009
7 GEN (Ret.) Eric Ken Shinseki   January 20, 2009 – May 30, 2014 Barack Obama
- Sloan D. Gibson   May 30, 2014 - July 30, 2014
8 Robert A. McDonald   July 30, 2014 - January 20, 2017
- Robert Snyder   January 20, 2017 - February 14, 2017 Donald Trump
9 David Shulkin   February 14, 2017 - March 28, 2018
- Robert Wilkie   March 28, 2018 - May 29, 2018
- Peter O'Rourke   May 29, 2018 - July 23, 2018
10 Robert Wilkie   Since July 30, 2018

^ West served as acting Secretary from January 2, 1998[4] to May 5, 1998.[5]
^ Acting secretary.[6]

Living former Secretaries of Veterans AffairsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Public Law 109-177§.503
  2. 2.0 2.1 38 U.S.C. § 304: Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Accessed 2008-01-13.
  3. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hi6r-WMKkf2LwqPLQN0PhNMabNmgD95R59EG0
  4. White House (1997-12-02). "President Clinton Names Togo D. West, Jr. As Acting Secretary Of The Department Of Veterans' Affairs". Press release. http://clinton6.nara.gov/1997/12/1997-12-02-togo-west-named-acting-secretary-at-veterans-affairs.html. Retrieved 2009-09-09. 
  5. Staff (May 1999). "The Honorable Togo D. West, Jr". Department of Veterans Affairs. Retrieved 2009-09-09.
  6. Department of Veterans Affairs (2000-07-25). "Gober Takes Over Top Spot at VA". Press release. http://www1.va.gov/opa/pressrel/pressrelease.cfm?id=203. Retrieved 2009-09-29.