Executive Order

Executive Order  No. 613: Reaffirming and Establishing the Governor's Advisory Council on Veterans' Services

Date: 05/26/2023
Issuer: Maura Healey
Mass Register: No. 1497
Revoking and Superseding: Executive Order No. 573

Table of Contents

  • Ahead of Memorial Day weekend, Governor Maura Healey, joined by Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll and Secretary Jon Santiago, signed Executive Order #613, creating the Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans' Services to inform the Governor about veterans' issues in Massachusetts. The Council will complement the work that Secretary Santiago and the recently elevated Executive Office of Veterans; Services are doing to assess current programs, services, and regulations for veterans and make recommendations to the Governor. 

  • WHEREAS, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts gives thanks for the selfless service of our veterans, who defended and protected our lives, liberties, rights, and safety, and to the veterans’ families for their countless sacrifices; 

    WHEREAS, the Commonwealth recognizes and honors the discipline, loyalty, and virtue of these people who have valiantly served our country;

    WHEREAS, the Commonwealth expresses its gratitude by reaffirming its commitment to establishing, continuing, and improving services, benefits, and protections to veterans and their families;

    WHEREAS, the Commonwealth champions equity and seeks to ensure that veterans and their families do not face prejudice, discrimination, or unequal treatment.

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, Maura Healey, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution, Part 2, c. 2, § I, Art. I, do hereby revoke Executive Order No. 573 and order as follows:

    Section 1.  The Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans’ Services is hereby reaffirmed and established to advise the Governor on all issues that impact veterans of the Commonwealth so the Governor will be in the best position to support veterans and strengthen opportunities for them throughout the Commonwealth.

    Section 2.  The Council shall consist of a Chair, the Secretary of the Executive Office of Veterans’ Services, who shall serve ex officio, the Chair of the Women’s Advisory Council on Veterans Affairs, and additional members as the Governor shall determine. The Governor shall appoint the Chair and each member. Each member shall serve at the Governor’s pleasure, without compensation, in an advisory capacity for a term of three years.

    Section 3. The members of the Council shall reflect a cross-section of our community, representing not only geographically diverse parts of the Commonwealth, but also including indigenous veterans and reflecting our inhabitants’ diversity of race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, ability, immigration status, and economic status.

    Section 4. The Council shall review and assess federal and state laws and regulations and existing programs and services relating to veterans to enhance the lives of veterans and their families in the Commonwealth.

    Section 5. To achieve this goal, the Council may ask the Secretary of the Executive Office of Veterans’ Services to supply data, reports and other relevant information and assistance. To foster and promote diversity, equity, and inclusion, if necessary, the Secretary of the Executive Office of Veterans’ Services will establish a work group to ensure that data includes information from underrepresented groups.

    Section 6. The Council shall meet at least quarterly each year at the direction of the Chair. The Council shall submit a formal written report every two years to the Governor and Lieutenant Governor, summarizing the Council’s work and recommendations.

    Section 7. The Chair, as needed, may establish subcommittees comprised of members of the Council and non-members drawn from various groups and organizations committed to veterans and veteran-related issues, including the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, to accomplish the purposes of this Executive Order. The Chair shall designate a member of the Council to chair each subcommittee. The subcommittee chair will schedule the subcommittee meetings. 

    Section 8. This Executive Order shall take effect on May 25, 2023 and shall continue in effect until amended, superseded, or revoked by subsequent Executive Order.

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