Membership ensures no veteran is left behind

Membership ensures no veteran is left behind

Membership will always matter in The American Legion.

A strong membership ensures that no veteran is left behind through our advocacy efforts and voice on Capitol Hill and in state legislatures around our nation when we fight for legislation that provides the best care and benefits for our veterans. A prime example of these efforts was the recent approval of the PACT Act.

But membership also empowers The American Legion to use our voice in addressing and preventing veteran suicide through the Be The One campaign. Membership also is our voice in shaping future leaders through our Americanism programs like Boys State and Boys Nation, American Legion Baseball, oratorical and shooting sports. Membership also allows us to provide countless hours of voluntary service to our communities, states and nation.

I am honored that there were 1,366 submissions for my “No Veteran Left Behind” pin to be awarded to Legionnaires who obtained three new members into The American Legion for 2022. There also were 308 submissions for the pin to be awarded to a post, district, county, division, department commander or membership chairman who achieved 103% of their assigned membership goal for 2022.

The pin is a small token of appreciation to the bigger picture of ensuring membership strength for no veteran to be left behind.

Your membership matters. And so does the membership of the veteran you meet at the grocery store, in a parking lot or who is just leaving active duty and needs the camaraderie and understanding of his or her fellow veteran. In order to grow this great organization, we need to be active where the veterans are and fully engage them.

For example, members of the Marketing Committee at Post 90 in Cape Coral, Fla., recruited 27 new members into the post for 2022. The committee staffed a booth at trade shows and festivals in Cape Coral to recruit new members and attended Cape Coral Bike Night to promote the Legion Riders program. “This tactic has earned the Marketing Committee a substantial list of leads and evidence that trade shows turned out to be a vital step toward attracting veterans to our post and our programs,” said Post 90 Public Relations Officer Ted Clark.

As we embark on 2023 membership year, I urge you to keep the membership matters momentum going for us to see growth. Through membership, we will continue to be the nation’s largest and most influential veterans service organization. After all, we are  …

Veterans Strengthening America.

Paul E. Dillard

National Commander

The American Legion