Our current U.S. veteran population is aging, with Gulf War-era veterans now accounting for the largest share of all U.S. veterans, surpassing Vietnam-era veterans in 2016. By 2045, the share of female veterans is expected to double, and projections indicate that the veteran population will become slightly younger. Our U.S. veteran population has changed, is currently changing and will continue to change, according to a 2017 Pew Research Center report outlining these and other notable shifts.
While we know change can be beneficial, Veterans Day reminds us of what won’t and what can’t change. What won’t change is the patriotism and love of country our veterans hold. Regardless of age, gender, branch or any other defining characteristics, those who serve share a willingness to sacrifice that is unparalleled. Their bravery, strength and humility are constants.
What can’t change is our gratitude. Those who protect us, the freedoms we hold dear, and this great nation deserve respect and appreciation, and not just on Veterans Day. It’s also important to recognize the role military families play in providing support for their loved ones serving. I’d like to use this Veterans Day to thank our veteran colleagues; it is a privilege to work with you. I also want to commend our Veterans Employee Resource Group (VERG) for its efforts to drive initiatives to enhance the participation of veterans in D&Z's growth and success.