Sec. Bob McDonald recently spoke at the Student Veterans of America (SVA) National Conference in San Antonio, Texas.
While asking student Vets to join the ranks of VA and help create an organization of which everyone can be proud, McDonald laid out his three strategies for moving VA forward – restoring trust, improving service, and setting the course for long-term excellence and reform.
These three strategies are not just marketing slogans for McDonald. Since beginning his tenure as VA secretary with a visit to the Phoenix VA Medical Center, he has traveled to more than 75 other facilities to speak with Veterans and VA employees.
McDonald’s 90-day plan is taking hold and employees have recommitted themselves to I-CARE (Integrity, Commitment, Advocacy, Respect, Excellence) values. As he travels, the Secretary places an emphasis on recruiting the best and brightest minds to serve Veterans. Whether speaking to students from Harvard or Duke, or Veterans at the SVA and IAVA conferences, McDonald touts VA as the “best place to work for the best customers in the world.”
Accountability is a high priority for McDonald. Since July, VA has fired more than 1,000 employees for violating their responsibility to serve Veterans and to uphold VA’s I CARE core values.
In all, McDonald’s swift actions over the past seven months are helping the department turn the corner and refocus on putting the mission and customer first.