Livingston County Veteran Services Director Jason Skinner will serve his last day today after more than six years leading the County’s Veteran Services department.
Skinner first began working with the County’s veterans in this role in September of 2015. During his time at the department’s helm, he’s worked tirelessly to improve the lives of area veterans by fighting for access to benefits, supporting the funding of life-saving mental health resources, and acting as an advocate for veterans as they interact with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Among his many accomplishments, Skinner said he’s most proud of the Veteran Services department’s paper-to-digital transition. The office is now 100 percent paperless, with all files being scanned and digitally uploaded directly to the VA, resulting in more efficient and accessible records. Technology upgrades have also given the office the ability to perform virtual appeals hearings directly from the Veterans Services office in Mount Morris. Skinner credits County leadership for his ability to accomplish so much while serving as director.
“I am honored to have served the County in this role and would like to share credit with the Livingston County Board of Supervisors, County Administrator Ian Coyle, and Probation Director Lynne Mignemi for their continued support,” he said. “The military instills a sense of responsibility and prepares veterans to become stewards of their community. Public service is a great career path for veterans that want to continue serving honorably, especially with the support of a great employer like Livingston County.”
Skinner worked to connect housebound veterans with the VA’s Home Based Primary Care team while director. The team provides patients experiencing complex, chronic, progressively disabling diseases with comprehensive, long-term home care. Skinner said this service is life-changing for veterans in need of it, especially in a rural community like Livingston County.
He was also instrumental in the creation of the Livingston County Veteran’s Monument, a more than 8,000 square foot memorial in the shape of an American flag, dedicated to the veterans of Livingston County. The monument features 255 red metal poppies, hand crafted by local veterans, which adorn the red stripes of the flag.
Skinner helped negotiate increased funding for the Joseph P. Dwyer Peer-to-Peer Veterans’ Support Program with state government during his time as director. His direct advocacy for life-saving peer-to-peer support resources resulted in 150 percent more revenue allocated to each county Veteran Service Agency in New York.
“I join with our County veteran population in thanking Jason for his support and advocacy for veteran’s issues,” stated Board of Supervisors Chairman David LeFeber. “He’s done amazing work during his time here. We’re sad to see him go, but wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
Skinner is a veteran of the U.S. Army, which he joined in 2003. He served with the 3rd Squadron of the 17th Cavalry in Iraq, achieving the rank of corporal before his honorable discharge from the armed services. Skinner was recently inducted into the New York State Senate Veteran’s Hall of Fame for his efforts on behalf of the state’s veteran population.
Beyond his work with the County, Skinner also serves as a New York State County Service Officer Association President, National Association of Counties Veterans and Military Families Vice Chairman, member of the National Association of County Veterans Service Officers, and Finger Lakes Veterans Advocacy Council President.
Livingston County has named Deputy Director of Veteran Services David Terry as the department’s Interim Director. Skinner offered words of high praise for Terry’s work with Veteran Services.
“Without David Terry none of these achievements would have been possible,” said Skinner. “In many cases, David was the backbone of the office’s operations.”
For more information on the Livingston County Veteran’s Services department, please visit here.