STATE SERVICE OFFICER

The State of Illinois VFW Department Service Office is headquartered at the VA Regional Office in Chicago, IL. The Department Service Office is organized under the authority of the Department By-Laws and provides services under the supervision of the Department Veterans Service Committee. All Service Officers employed by the VFW of Illinois are members of the VFW. All Service Officers and Claims Consultants are accredited by the VA through the VFW and perform their duties in accordance with the National Policy and Procedure Manual of the VFW National Veterans Service.

 

The mission of the Department Service Office is to assist all veterans of Illinois, their dependents and their survivors in the pursuit of all benefits administered by the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to which they may be entitled.

 

This mission is pursued through the development of supportive relationships with County Veteran Assistance Commission (VAC) Offices, Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs (IDVA) Offices and the state wide network of volunteer

VFW Post and District Service Officers. From these sources claims for benefits are received, prepared and submitted to the VA.

 

The Department Service Office is under the direction of the Department Service Officer, Derek Giffin, an Iraq veteran. Currently, the Service Office staff includes four Assistant State Service Officers, two working in Chicago, one stationed

at the Marion VAMC and one stationed at the Danville VAMC.

 

Field service coverage is also provided at various locations as indicated in the schedule listed below. Staff members from the Chicago office also provide representative services at Hines VAMC. 

 

The Regional Office staff also includes two claims consultants and one clerical support staff member.

 

Activities of the Service Office staff include case management of claims submitted to the VA from all state wide sources to include representation in the VA appeals process to the VA Board of Veterans Appeals. Staff members provide training of Post and District Service Officers and participate in training seminars for IDVA and VAC staff and local volunteers. The staff also provides guest speakers on the issues of VA benefits to VFW Posts and Districts, local civic groups, military Reserve and National Guard units and college student organizations as requested.

 

The hours of operation and contact information for the Department Service Office are listed below. Members with questions about existing claims or requesting information about VA benefits are encouraged to contact the Department Service Office during hours of operation or by e-mail.

 

Department Service Office Contact Information

VFW Service Office

Room 105

2122 West Taylor St

Chicago, IL 60612

Phone: 312-980-4284

Fax: 312-706-6680

Email: derek.giffin@va.gov

Office Telephone Hours

Monday thru Friday

8:00 am to 3:30 pm

Office Walk-In Hours

Monday thru Thursday

9:00 am to 11:30 am

12:30 pm to 3:00 pm

 

Derek Giffin, Director, US Army, Iraq, derek.giffin@va.gov

 

Vera Moore, Assistant State Service Officer, Chicago, USMC, Iraq, vera.moore@va.gov

 

Russell Meredith, Assistant State Service Officer, Chicago, US Navy, Iraq

russell.meredith@va.gov

 

Greg Strong, Assistant State Service Officer, Marion VAMC, US Army, Iraq