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Ms. Heather L. Ansley, Esq., MSW

Ms. Heather L. Ansley, Esq., MSW, Vice President of Veterans Policy VetsFirst

Dear Chairman Stutzman and Ranking Member Braley:

VetsFirst, a program of United Spinal Association, respectfully requests to submit this letter for the record of the May 16, 2012, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity hearing, "Examining Executive Order #13607 and Its Impact on Schools and Veterans.”

Educational benefits are critical for helping disabled veterans reintegrate into their communities. Thus, every effort must be made to ensure that veterans who receive educational assistance due to their military service are not preyed upon but are provided both the education and supportive assistance they need to succeed. Disabled veterans must also have access to the information they need to make an informed decision in selecting an institution of higher learning.

As a result, VetsFirst strongly supports the requirements detailed in Executive Order #13607, “Establishing Principles of Excellence for Educational Institutions Serving Service Members, Veterans, Spouses, and Other Family Members,” which was signed by President Obama on April 27, 2012. This Executive Order includes many of the provisions of the veterans and military service organization developed “Military and Veteran Students Educational Bill of Rights.” Although the Executive Order does not fully address our concerns, it represents an important first step in ensuring the continued integrity of these benefits.

If you have any questions, please contact Heather Ansley, Vice President of Veterans Policy, at (202) 556-2076, ext. 7702 or by e-mail at

Heather L. Ansley, Esq., MSW
Vice President of Veterans Policy
VetsFirst, a program of United Spinal Association