COLD SPRING, Ky. – Alana Lewis, who has spent 160 hours spanning a five-year period volunteering at the Overton Brooks VA Medical Center in Shreveport, La., has been awarded $5,000 by DAV (DisabledAmerican Veterans) to pursue her educational goal of studying hospitality management and tourism.
The 18-year-old is a recipient of the Jesse Brown Memorial Youth Scholarship, which is awarded annually to the top youth volunteers in the DAV Voluntary Services program. Named after former Secretary of Veterans Affairs Jesse Brown, it honors the memory of a DAV leader dedicated to serving veterans through recognition of those who carry on his legacy of service. The scholarship is open to volunteers age 21 and younger who have contributed a minimum of 100 hours credited through DAV or DAV Auxiliary.
The scholarship will be presented to Lewis at the DAV and Auxiliary97th National Convention July 14 in Reno, Nev.
“Alana’s commitment to serving veterans goes beyond volunteering at the VA,” said DAV National Voluntary Services Director John Kleindienst, who added that Lewis volunteered over 300 hours before registering through DAV as a volunteer. “Her evidence of compassion for veterans carries on in her duties as Miss Louisiana’s Outstanding Teen. She travels throughout the state and shares her message of ‘Love Our Veterans Everywhere,’ which she established to honor veterans and bring community awareness to the needs of veterans and the need to thank them.”
“Alana’s initiative and leadership skills are a tremendous factor in serving veterans and educating communities about the sacrifices veterans have made,” said DAV National Adjutant Marc Burgess. “She seizes every opportunity to teach and mentor others, as well as shine her light to make veterans’ days brighter.”
DAV empowers veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity. It is dedicated to a single purpose: fulfilling our promises to the men and women who served. DAV does this by ensuring that veterans and their families can access the full range of benefits available to them; fighting for the interests of America’s injured heroes on Capitol Hill; providing employment resources to veterans and their families and educating the public about the great sacrifices and needs of veterans transitioning back to civilian life. DAV, a non-profit organization with more than 1 million members, was founded in 1920 and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1932.