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Indiana Department of Veterans' Affairs

DVA > Resources > Veterans' Affairs Commission Veterans' Affairs Commission

The Commission consists of seven (7) members appointed by the Governor. Members of the commission must be honorably discharged veterans who have at least six months service in the armed forces of the United States and are citizens of the United States and Indiana. Not more than two members of the commission may be active members in the same veterans' organization or members of the same political party. Vacancies in the commission must be filled by the governor, and the appointees shall serve for the remainder of the term of office of the original appointee. Each member of the commission before entering upon the member's duties shall take and subscribe an oath that the member will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Indiana and will faithfully discharge all the duties devolving upon the member as a member of the commission.

The governor shall consider the following when making appointments:
(A) Membership in:
   (i) a veterans association established under IC 10-18-6; or
   (ii) a veterans organization listed in IC 10-18-8-1.
(B) Service in the armed forces of the United States (as defined in IC 5-9-4-3) or the national guard (as defined in IC 5-9-4-4).
(C) Experience in education, including higher education, vocational education, or adult education.
(D) Experience in investment banking or finance.

The governor shall designate one (1) member to serve as chairperson of the board.

Veterans Affairs Commission Members:

BG James Bauerle – Chairman
LtGen Carol Mutter
LtCol Charles Haislip 
MG R. Martin Umbarger, represented by Col. Roger Peterman
Richard Jewell – American Legion
Terry Bruning – VFW
Richard Caldwell – AMVETS
Maj. Obadiah Smith Jr. – DAV
Senator Jim Banks
Senator Frank Mrvan
Representative Dennis Zent
Representative Karlee Macer

Other persons serving on the Commission will be:

(1) The director of veterans' affairs appointed under IC 10-17-1-5 or the director's designee. 
(2) The adjutant general of the military department of the state appointed under IC 10-16-2-6 or the adjutant general's designee.
(3) Four (4) members of the general assembly appointed as follows:
(A) Two (2) members of the senate, one (1) from each political party, appointed by the president pro tempore of the senate with advice from the minority leader of the senate.
(B) Two (2) members of the house of representatives, one (1) from each political party, appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives with advice from the minority leader of the house of representatives.

Members currently serving under the above rule are:

James Brown- Director, Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs
MG R. Martin Umbarger - Adjutant General - Indiana National Guard
            MG Umbarger's designee is:
                    COL (Ret.) Roger Peterman                    
State Senator Jim Banks
State Senator Frank Mrvan
State Representative Dennis Zent
State Representative Karlee Macer

Legislative members appointed under this subdivision are nonvoting, advisory members and must serve on a standing committee of the senate or house of representatives that has subject matter jurisdiction over military and veterans affairs.

The commission may adopt rules necessary to obtain benefits under present and future enactments of the Congress of the United States concerning veterans' affairs, and enter into on behalf of the state contracts or agreements with the government of the United States to receive benefits under present and future federal enactments concerning veterans' aid and benefits. A contract or agreement entered into under this Indiana Code must first be approved by the governor and attorney general.

At least one regular meeting of the Commissioners must be held per quarter and that meeting is open to the public. Meetings are generally held on the 2nd Friday of January, April, July and October. Exact dates and locations will be posted on the Calendar.

Duties of Commission; management of fund

(a) The Commission shall manage and develop the Military Family Relief Fund and the Veterans' Affairs Trust Fund and the assets of the funds.
(b) The Commission shall do the following:
(1) Establish a policy for the investment of the assets of the fund. In establishing a policy under this subdivision, the board shall:
(A) consider the immediate needs of veterans and their families to the extent those needs are not addressed by the military family relief fund established by IC 10-17-12-8; and
(B) have as its long term goal creating a self sustaining fund that is not dependent on legislative sources of funding.
(2) Acquire money for the fund through the solicitation of private or public donations and other revenue producing activities.
(3) Perform other tasks consistent with prudent management and development of the fund.