United States Secretary of Veterans Affairs

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The United States Secretary of Veterans' Affairs is the head of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, the department concerned with veterans' benefits and related matters. The Secretary is a member of the Cabinet and second to last at 17th in the line of succession to the presidency (the position was last until the addition of the United States Department of Homeland Security in 2006[1]). To date, all appointees and acting appointees to the post have been United States military veterans, but that is not a requirement to fill the position.

When the post of Secretary is vacant, the United States Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs[2] or any other person designated by the President serves as Acting Secretary[2] until the President nominates and the United States Senate confirms a new Secretary.

On December 8, 2008, President Barack Obama announced he would nominate retired army General Eric Shinseki to be the 7th Secretary of Veterans Affairs. He was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate on January 20, 2009.[3]


List of Secretaries of Veterans Affairs

Lt. Gen., USA (Ret.)

General, USA (Ret.)

^ West served as acting Secretary from January 2, 1998[4] to May 5, 1998.[5]
^ Acting secretary.[6]

Living former Secretaries of Veterans Affairs

See also

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