This afternoon, the Senate voted Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., as the new chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs.
Murray earned the AMVETS Congressional Silver Helmet Award in 2008 for her lifelong work to support veterans in her home state and around the country.
Murray first started giving back to the veterans' community by volunteering at the Seattle VA Medical Center during the Vietnam War and she is the daughter of a Purple Heart recipient who was one of the first soldiers to land on Okinawa during World War II.
In her acceptance speech for the Silver Helmet in 2008, Murray said her experiences working with wounded veterans at VA helped guide her decision-making in Washington to best serve the needs of American veterans.
AMVETS National Commander Jerry Hotop said he looks forward to working with Murray and her staff, and that she brings decades of insight and experience to her post.
Some of Murray's most notable accomplishments include advocating for improved health care for Gulf War veterans and ensuring all veterans are entitled to receive military funeral honors.
Murray was the first woman selected to serve on the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee and she will also be the first woman to serve as the committee's chair.
Military Times spoke with Murray about her selection to lead the committee. To read her thoughts on her new responsibilities, Click Here.
(Image: Sen. Patty Murray, center, poses for a photo with AMVETS Past National Commander John P. "JP" Brown III and his wife, Jan Brown, at the 2008 Congressional Silver Helmet Awards reception on Capitol Hill. Photo courtesy of the Office of Sen. Patty Murray.)