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Deborah Johnson

Board Member

Deborah Johnson is the President/CEO of the California Veterans Assistance Foundation. She is an honorably discharged Wisconsin Army National Guard veteran with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration.

Deborah enlisted in the Wisconsin Army National Guard in 1985 and reached the rank of Sergeant (E-5).  She was with the 107th Maintenance Company and served 9 years and 9 months.  While serving in the Wisconsin National Guard, she served during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm from Aug 1990 to Aug 1991 where she received the Army Commendation Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal and the Liberation of Kuwait Medal. In addition, she was Troop Command Soldier of the Year for 1987 and received the Wisconsin Guard and Reserve Military Achievement Award.

Deborah started her career with homeless veterans in 1996, as an Office Manager working at the Veterans Assistance Center at Fort McCoy, WI for the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs.  In the fall of 1996, the Veterans Assistance Foundation (VAF) took over operations of the homeless programs and she was promoted to Executive Director in 1999 where she stayed until January 2009.

In January 2009, Deborah transferred to the California Veterans Assistance Foundation in Bakersfield and was named President/CEO in December of that year.

Professional Affiliations:

  • VFW District 6 Commander (16-17)

  • VFW National Legislative Committee (16-17)

  • Homeless Veteran Committee Chairman, VFW, Dept of California (3rd appt.)

  • Education and Training Committee, VFW, Dept of California (15-17)

  • State Surgeon, Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Department of California (14-16)

  • Past All-State Post Commander, VFW Post 1468, Bakersfield

  • 2016 Humanitarian of the Year – Community Action Partnership of Kern

  • 2015 Igniting Hope Award – Stewards Inc.

  • By-laws and Manual of Procedure Committee, VFW National Convention (2015)

  • National Aide-de-Camp, Veterans of Foreign Wars (2012, 2013, 2015)

  • Chairman, Women Veterans Advisory Committee

  • Member At Large, Kern County Homeless Collaborative (Veteran Representative)

  • Member At Large, Past Chairman, Kern County Veterans Collaborative

  • Board Member, Kern County Network for Children

  • Board Member, California Association of Veteran Service Agencies (CAVSA)

  • Co-chair, Kern County Veterans Stand Down

  • Board Member, VFW Foundation

  • Board Member, VETFUND Foundation

  • Member, California Women Veterans Leadership Committee

  • Member, National Coalition for Homeless Veterans (NCHV)

Image by Thomas Loizeau
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