- The Marine Corps League of Pennsylvania has honored state Sen. Lisa Baker (R-20th) for her stalwart dedication to veterans and veterans’ organizations.
During the organization’s 69th annual state convention held recently at the Best Western Plus East Mountain Inn in Plains Township, Luzerne County, the League announced Baker was the recipient of its Distinguished Citizens Award and the Silver Distinguished Citizens Medal.
In addition, they granted her honorary membership.
Baker serves on the Senate’s Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, a body she chaired until earlier this year. She said the honors are humbly accepted.
She praised the Marine Corps League as an organization that truly advocates for their members and for veterans who bravely served their nation.
“Lots of folks these days talk about helping others, but few groups have a record of strong and consistent effort such as theirs,” Baker said. “It is inspiring to see the devotion and dedication they demonstrate toward the cause of those serving and those who have honorably served.
“The lives of countless veterans are better because the Marine Corps League is still on duty.”
The Marine Corps League has about 80 detachments in Pennsylvania, more than a half dozen of which serve residents of the 20th Senatorial District.
Among Baker’s efforts to help Pennsylvania veterans:
• Advancing legislation creating a special veteran designation on state driver’s license to honor the service of the commonwealth’s 950,000 military veterans.
The veterans’ mark of honor includes an American flag graphic with the word “veteran” printed underneath.
• Establishing the "Honoring Our Veterans" Pennsylvania license plate. The cost of the plate is $35, of which PennDOT will transfer $15 from the fee to the Pennsylvania Veterans' Trust Fund.
In addition, when applying for a driver's license or vehicle registration, one may check a box and contribute $3 to the fund, on top of the fee.
• Introduced legislation that became Act 66 of 2007 that enhances outreach assistance and support programs for Pennsylvania’s veterans.
It provides financial assistance to the Veterans Administration accredited service officer programs offered by nationally chartered veteran service organizations to ensure the continual improvement of services to Pennsylvania’s veterans.
• Hosting VFW field representatives in her district offices in Dallas and Hawley to assist veterans of all branches, and their spouses, with benefit questions.
• Sponsored legislation that became Act 5 of 2013 that set statewide uniformity requirements in order to serve as a county director of veteran affairs.
• Introduced legislation that became Act 80 of 2014, which reduces the cost of an annual hunting license for military veterans in the commonwealth who are 60 percent or greater disabled, as determined by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, to $1.