We are here to serve you; veterans, dependents, survivors, and those transitioning from military service. We offer assistance in determining eligibility, connecting you with the services you need, filling out paperwork, and ensuring you receive every benefit you have earned.
- Verdie Bowen, Director
The Alaska Office of Veterans Affairs serves as the primary advocate for Alaska's veterans and strives to help our veterans and their families improve their lives. From helping veterans to file claims for education, medical or other benefits to assisting them in obtaining earned military awards, the Office of Veterans Affairs is here to serve you.
Also located throughout the state are Veterans Service Officers who are trained to help you find the benefits you are entitled to and assist you in claiming them.
Our services, as well as the services of the Veterans Service Officers are provided free of charge.
We will ensure that all veterans, active duty, guard, reserve and their families understand and receive all the benefits, support, care, and recognition they have earned and are entitled to, by expertly administering all current programs, anticipating future need and taking appropriate action to meet those needs.
We will promote awareness, assist eligible veterans, active duty, guard/reserve, their families, and survivors to receive from the U.S. Federal and State Governments any and all benefits to which they may be entitled under existing or further laws to be enacted.
While the Office of Veterans Affairs deals with individuals seeking assistance with benefits, the Alaska Veterans Advisory Council has a different mission. By listening to our veteran communities, the advisory council is able to bring informed recommendations about the needs and benefits of our veterans to the Office of Veterans Affairs, and governor. They report on the success of existing legislation, regulations, benefits and services, as well as bringing concerns about needs and benefits for veterans and their dependents.
Office of Veterans Affairs
In 2009, Mr. Verdie Bowen was appointed as Director of the Office of Veterans Affairs by former Governor Sarah Palin. As Director, Mr. Bowen is responsible for the development and establishment of polices and strategic plans that directly affect over 230,000 Alaskans including all Alaska veterans, active duty, reserve components, dependents, and survivors living in the states 348 communities. Recently, Mr. Bowen served nationally as the 70th President of the National Association of State Directors of Veterans Affairs. In this position he provided key testimony for five major pieces of legislation; the most critical being the Veterans Affairs (VA) Modernization Act of 2017 and the VA Mission Act of 2018.
Since his appointment, Mr. Bowen has traveled to over 265 communities in Alaska. He has provided critical testimony to the US Senate on rural healthcare and helped as a member of the 13th working group to facilitate the establishment of a memorandum of agreement between Alaska Tribal Health Agencies and the Federal VA allowing veterans to receive healthcare in villages all across Alaska. Mr. Bowen served on the Department of Veterans Affairs Rural Health Advisory committee from 2013 to 2017. He has also provided guidance and testimony to the Alaska State Legislator on several local veteran’s issues. To date he has provided guidance on the following passed legislation:
Currently he is working on the development of a new state veteran's cemetery in Fairbanks and the establishment of a DoD/VA/Alaskan software platform assisting veterans with earned benefits.
As a 23-year veteran of the U.S. Air Force, Mr. Bowen began his military career in 1981 serving in several units as a Communications Specialist. His major assignments included the following units:
During his service, he supported the research and development of long-range communications pertaining to the Global Positioning System (GPS) and the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). He managed the deployment of the Defense Mediterranean Improvement Satellite Program. He installed the first Alaskan bandwidth management network. Finally, he designed and installed UN and NATO telephone systems connecting commercial air traffic control towers in the old Czech Republic which allowed commercial air traffic back into this theater of operations.
Mr. Bowen holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Information Systems from Bellevue University in Nebraska. He is married to Catherine Bowen and they have four sons and four grandchildren.
(Current as of December 2018)
4600 DeBarr Rd., Suite 180
Anchorage AK 99508