Candidate Platforms - Election 2013

President Elect (2013-2014)

Steve Lackie  lackie Thank you for the honor of running for the position President Elect of the Veteran’s Caucus Board of Directors. I am a Life member of the Caucus and have prior experience as a board member, and as prior President-elect, although I was unable serve you as your President when elected. The fact is I feel I have gained a new focus and view point from my short hiatus away from the Caucus while overseas. I suppose I would have to say the tour in Germany and my current service on the Board have given me a more acute awareness of the need for active involvement of all members of the Caucus in the Board actions and activities. The current President and Board have all tried to set new national goals for the Caucus as a more active national organization at the constituent chapter level. This follows a tremendously labor intensive and ultimately successful effort by Mike Valdez’s working group to place us in the next higher level of participation in the actual day to day work of the AAPA. This is a goal of mine to continue the work that was begun and absolutely must continue. We are actively engaged in the effort of recruitment and training of military members into our profession with initiatives through AAPA and we must continue cooperative ventures in this effort. We need and must have more active participation from you the membership and therefore efforts will begin to bring more interested members into the activities on the Board. Having previously served you as a member of the Board, I am well aware of the functions of the different committees, and the work required of the members of each committee. I am also aware of the shortcomings that can, and have occurred, and the damage that can result. Therefore I pledge to work endlessly for you the membership if elected as your President Elect. My word to you is that I will continue to serve you, membership to who I will be personally responsible. I feel I can serve you and the Board in a complete and through manner.

Thank you for your trust and your vote

Steve Lackie
Mike Gallagher gallagher  Greetings fellow PA Veterans. My name is Mike Gallagher. I am a veteran, having served in the Special operations community for most of my 27 years of active duty and I have been a practicing Physician Assistant for more than 30 years. Today I humbly seek your vote to serve as President of the Veterans Caucus of the American Academy of Physician Assistants. I have been a member of the Caucus for more than 20 years. I have served as chairperson to several different committees. I have been on the Board of Directors, and have served as President. I have been a part of the continued growth of the Caucus over the years. I have seen the Caucus grow from a fraternal group of Veterans who often shared adult beverages while spouting our best War stories to the Group that leads the AAPA in observance of Memorial Day at our National Meeting.

We offer annual scholarships to Veterans who are in PA programs across the country and offer annual CME . The Caucus is now headed in a new direction. With the help of the AAPA we are spearheading a program to educate the public on matters specific to our Veterans. This includes educating the educators to problems that are unique to the Veteran. We also want to educate the health care providers on health issues unique to the Veteran. I have been a part of the evolution and want to be a part of the implementation of these programs. We have always had an impact on the AAPA and its veteran members and now we have an opportunity to impact all veterans across the nation.

The current Board of Directors is an amazing group of Pa’s and Pa Educators and I wish to remain a part of this team to help achieve our new goals and continue with those we have accomplished in the past. Please support me with your vote and if not please be an active member and vote for another candidate.


Mike Gallagher, PA-C


Chris Melcher  melcher I’ve been a member of the Veteran’s Caucus since 2005, when I joined as a Student member. While I’ve never held a position with an organization on a national level before, I feel that I have a lot to offer the position. I served in the USAF for 20 years, 13 of them as an Independent Duty Medical Technician, and attended PA school at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale after retirement. I believe we should “give back” to the profession, and in the six years since graduation, I have been actively involved in precepting over10 students, and have recruited new members to the Veteran’s Caucus on several occasions. I am ready to take the next step in “giving back” and become more active in helping the Veteran’s Caucus. I think we need to challenge our member’s to become more proactive in recruiting new members. We need to continue taking the lead in veteran’s health issues such as PTSD and TBI diagnosis and treatment. Our scholarship program is outstanding, and we should continue to improve it.

I look forward to continuing my association with this outstanding organization, and hope to gain your vote so I can take a step forward in helping in any way I can.

Chris Melcher, PA-C
Nancy McLaughlin  mclaughlin My name is Nancy McLaughlin. I have been a PA for 12 years. I was active duty Army for 10 ½ years and attended the Interservice Physician Assistant Program. I currently live in Atlanta, Georgia and am a Clinical Assistant Professor at Mercer University’s PA Program. Even though I am out of the military, I still continue to do contract work with the National Guard with OnSite Health. In addition, I educate my students on the wonderful benefits of serving in the military. This current academic year three of my female students received full scholarships from the Air Force and Navy. I take great pride in being a good role model for all young people, but especially to females who are interested in the military. I think that I have a lot to offer the Veteran’s Caucus specifically helping increase the membership within my peer group. I am a firm believer of always keeping close contacts with those who I have served with. I have life-long friends that I feel could assist the Veteran’s Caucus with “carrying the torch”. I think that I would be able to spread awareness of the Veteran’ Caucus initiatives and help attract new members. In addition, I am very interested in participating on the scholarship committee. I would like to see additional memorial scholarships added from medics that served valiantly in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I am a Missouri native. I am a mother of an 8 year old boy, Andrew, and a 10 year old girl, Emily. They are the light of my life. I am currently working on my Doctorate of Health Sciences from Nova Southeastern University. I enjoy biking and rollerblading in my spare time.

I would be honored to serve on the Veteran’s Caucus. Thank you for your time and consideration.


Nancy McLaughlin
Miquel Valdez valdez  Platform statement - Miguel V. Valdez

It is an honor to have been nominated for the position on the Board of Directors for this upcoming election. I have accepted this nomination willingly and without reservation.

I am now asking for your support and your vote.

I have been an active member of the Board of Directors for several years, serving as a director at large and as president. I have had the privilege of leading several committees and have seen the progress that the Veterans Caucus is making with our members, the veterans we have pledged to serve, and our profession.

We have begun a more intense involvement with Veterans issues and it is crucial that the Veterans Caucus continue with our progressive momentum.

Our scholarship program is quite strong and provides a significant amount of financial help to very deserving students. If elected, my experience on all of the programs that the Caucus has undertaken can help to strengthen and make us more successful.

As I have stated in the past, I am not very knowledgeable about politics and that has not changed, but what I am is a “will do” member of the caucus.

With your vote, I can assure you that “I WILL DO”, whatever the task.

Thank you and I look forward to your support.
Miguel V. Valdez

House of Delegate (2013-2014)

John Padgett padgett Colleagues and fellow veterans,

This is an important time in the life of the Veterans Caucus, and it requires experienced and principled representation at the national level.

I am asking for your support to return me to the AAPA House of Delegates to represent the Caucus for the 2013 session. The Caucus Congress, which previously had one delegate to the House on a rotating basis among the various caucuses, has disbanded. Each recognized caucus now has a delegate. I represented the Veterans Caucus last year, and previously have been a delegate for Nevada and the Army. I know the procedures of the HOD and have a good working relationship with delegates from other chapters and the House leadership. I ask that you return me to continue the work of the Veterans Caucus to represent us and veterans everywhere.


John E. Padgett, PA-C, PhD
MAJ, US Special Forces (Ret)
President, Veterans Caucus of the American Academy of Physician Assistants