Saturday, July 18, 2015
James Yermas Elected Commander of Department of New York
James V. Yermas is the new commander of the New York State American Legion.
The election and swearing-in of Yermas and his officers to lead the Department of New York for the next year concluded the 97th state convention, held July 16-18 in Buffalo.
The Amsterdam native and Town of Florida resident is a Vietnam War Army veteran. He served as an aircraft repairman with the 101st Aviation Unit in Hue Phu Bai, where he earned the nickname, Jungle Jim. After returning from his tour in Vietnam, he was an instructor at Fort Eustis, VA.
Yermas is a retired General Electric machinist and former shop steward and assistant board member with UE-CWA Local 301. A 47-year member of the Legion, Yermas has served in many key positions, including serving as commander of John J. Wyszomirski Post 701, Montgomery County Legion and 4th District Legion. He also has served as department vice commander and vice chairman of the National Security Council. He currently serves on the National Security Foreign Relations Subcommittee. He is a member of both the national and New York American Legion Press Associations.
Delegates Approve Incentive and Contingency Plans
Prior to the election, delegates heard reports and voted on several issues, including:
— endorsing past Detachment Commander Greg “Doc” Gibbs to run for the position of national commander of the Sons of the American Legion.
— urging their delegation to the national convention to vote no on a proposed $5 national dues increase.
— approving a contingency plan, should the national increase take place, to have the Department absorb $2 of the increase and only pass on $3 to members in the first year.
— approving an incentive plan to return $1 for every member to posts that maintain their current membership plus add five new members in the 2016 membership year (not counting transfers).
Cadet of Year Heading to West Point
JROTC Advisor John R. Kasmer Jr. introduced the New York State American Legion’s Cadet of the Year, Cadet Lt. Col. Jordon Greene, who attended Hutch Technical High School in Buffalo and “competed against 50 seniors from JROTC programs across the state.”
Greene was accepted into the West Point Military Academy Preparatory School. “After his one year there, he’ll continue his education and military training for another four years, expected to graduate in the class of 2020 and be commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army.”