In the service, one is not expected to be complimented for a “job well done,” as you were assigned with the expectation it would be so. This carries over to veterans in their civilian careers, so singling out one for excellence is not in our DNA.
However, in these increasingly trying times it is universally recognized in the veteran community we have a Veterans Service Officer who excels in his position that sets him above his peers. I personally know of two veterans who have chosen to move here after learning how veterans are treated locally. This extends to our local VA clinic and the VA Medical Center in Albuquerque with whom Rich Schleeter closely works.
The VSO position is a very difficult one. Aside from the multiple “hats” one must wear it is difficult to not take heart-wrenching experiences home – especially those that go unresolved – as are coming to light lately.
Thanks to Rich. He is still the VA VSO for the state of Colorado that he was chosen for in 2012 by his peers.