Date ArticleType
1/31/2018 Member News

VA Deputy Secretary to Speak at St. Petersburg College

This is a press release from St. Petersburg College. For more information, contact Rita Farlow, Assistant Director, Marketing and Strategic Communications, 727-302-6526 or Marilyn Shaw, Public Relations Specialist, 727-341-4712.

VA Deputy Secretary to Speak at St. Petersburg College

The Honorable Tom Bowman, Deputy Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, will be the featured speaker at the Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions’ Spring Forum on Feb. 15 at St. Petersburg College.

In his address, titled VA Reform: Modernization and Transformation, Mr. Bowman will discuss VA’s efforts to modernize and transform VA to meet veterans’ needs in the 21st century. Following his remarks, Mr. Bowman will join a panel of local VA officials and veteran advocates to discuss progress and challenges for VA in this transformation.

The forum, titled VA Reform: Fulfilling the Promise to Veterans, will be from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Conference Center on SPC’s Seminole Campus, 9200 113th St. N. The Tampa Bay Times is media co-sponsor.

Reform of VA has been a promise of presidential administrations since it was last reformed more than two decades ago. Yet, despite passage of a $16.3 billion VA Reform Act four years ago, challenges remain.

Joining Deputy Secretary Bowman on the panel will be:

  • Suzanne Klinker, Director, Bay Pines VA Healthcare System
  • Alfonso Carreno, M.D., Chief of Mental Health and Behavioral Sciences Service, Bay Pines VA Medical Center
  • Rev. Father Robert "Bob" Swick, Retired Marine Corps Captain, Chaplain and Veterans Advocate

VA’s transformation efforts are intended to modernize systems, better focus resources, improve timeliness in delivery of care and benefits, provide greater choice for veterans on how they receive their care and prevent veteran suicide, VA’s top clinical priority. These efforts look to address common veterans’ complaints regarding outdated systems for scheduling appointments, long waits for processing of disability claims, and gaps in PTSD and mental health treatment.

Admission is free, but advance registration is requested at