At Confirmation Hearing for VA’s #2 Official, Tester Questions Nominee on Serving Nation’s Veterans

Committee also considered nominees for Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs, Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, & Assistant Secretary of Congressional and Legislative Affairs

At a confirmation hearing today for various top positions at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Jon Tester questioned Donald M. Remy on his qualifications to serve the nation’s veterans as Deputy Secretary.

“Mr. Remy, it’s no secret that VA faces its share of challenges,” said Tester. “If confirmed, you will hold the second most important position at the second largest government agency. What is your motivation to serve in this position at this point in your career?”

“Mr. Chairman, my motivation is highly personal,” replied Remy. “I’m a veteran. My father’s a veteran. My brother, my uncle, my late father-in-law, many friends and family have all served this nation in uniform and are now veterans of the nation. My family would not be where it is but for the VA. My father received his education, both his Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree, through VA benefits…My father has taught me many of the lessons I’ve learned in life, and I’ve been able to witness what my family has experienced, the benefits that VA has provided for him. And for that I am grateful. And for that I owe a debt of gratitude to the nation and to the VA. I’ll also like to say I am a mission-oriented individual, and I’ve worked in organizations that are mission-driven and there’s no greater mission than the mission to serve our nation’s veterans.”

At the hearing, Tester highlighted major challenges facing VA’s number two official—including rolling-out the Electronic Health Record Modernization, developing a framework for the Asset and Infrastructure Review Commission, bringing the VA workforce back into the office post-pandemic, and working to advance veteran interests on the Veterans Affairs-Defense Department Joint Executive Committee.

The Committee considered three additional nominees on the second panel, including Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs Major General Matt Quinn, Adjutant General of the Montana National Guard.

Donald M. Remy, Nominee to be Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Remy is a military veteran who earned a meritorious service medal during his tenure as a Captain in the United States Army. Presently, he is the National Collegiate Athletic Association Chief Operating Officer and Chief Legal Officer. His government career includes serving as Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice. As an Army Officer, he served as Assistant to the General Counsel for the United States Army, advising the General Counsel, the Secretary of the Army and other senior Army and Defense officials on a myriad of legal and policy issues. Prior to holding government offices, Donald worked in the private sector.

Gen. Matthew T. Quinn, USA, Ret., Nominee to be Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs
Major General Quinn served nearly 37 years in the U.S. Army and Army National Guard, culminating in his selection as the 27th Adjutant General for the State of Montana. He is a veteran of Operations Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom, commanding Soldiers at the company and battalion level. Prior to selection as the Adjutant General, Quinn was the President of ELM Locating and Utility Services, while serving in the Montana National Guard.

Maryanne Donaghy, Nominee to be Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection
Donaghy is an attorney and Senior Advisor at the Biden Institute at the University of Delaware and has counseled numerous organizations, including non-profits, large corporations and governmental agencies, on response to federal, state and congressional investigations, and on building effective compliance programs. She is a founding committee member of the Veterans’ Committee for the Delaware State Bar Association.

Patricia Ross, Nominee to be Assistant Secretary for Congressional and Legislative Affairs
Ross serves as Senior Policy Advisor to Speaker Pelosi covering veterans’ affairs and military families, agriculture and nutrition, education and labor. She has worked on Congressional passage of several significant laws including the CHOICE Act, MISSION Act, Forever GI Bill, Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act, Deborah Sampson Act, Every Student Succeeds Act, and bills to end the Widows and Kiddie Tax and provide COVID-19 relief.

Tester’s opening statement as prepared for delivery is available HERE.

Tester’s Q&A is available HERE.