St. Jacob man named state commander for Department of Illinois American Legion

News LeaderJuly 16, 2014 

NEW COMMANDER — Hank Robards of St. Jacob is the new state commander for the American Legion.

PICASA — Courtesy photo

Hank Robards of St. Jacob was named state commander for Illinois at the American Legion’s 96th annual Department of Illinois Convention July 9-12 in Springfield.

In Illinois, the American Legion has more than 105,000 members among its more than 800 local posts. Posts are organized into divisions, districts and counties. Each division, district and county has officers who provide leadership in their respective areas. In addition to these officers, members elect or appoint a number of state-level officers and committee chairmen each year to conduct the programs of the American Legion.

The American Legion conducts numerous programs of interest and benefit to veterans, their families and communities, including programs, such as, Premier Boys State, Youth Police School, American Legion Baseball, high school oratorical contests, Boy Scouts, blood donor donations, and child safety. Various scholarships are offered to youth through one of more of the programs.

Robards has been with the American Legion for the past 18 years. He served 24 years in the U.S. Air Force, with duty in Okinawa, Japan; Sembach, Germany; and in southeast Asia during the Vietnam War, among other places.

After his service, Robards was looking for a way to still be involved. The American Legion gave him that opportunity. He’s been on membership and post-activity committees on the state level previously, including serving the last year as state senior vice commander for Illinois. Robards is also part of a national commission that goes to Washington, D.C., to fight for veterans’ rights.

You are eligible to join the American Legion if you served honorably on active duty in the U.S. military for at least one day during World War II (Dec. 7, 1941 to Dec. 31, 1946); in the Merchant Marines from Dec. 7, 1941 to Aug. 14, 1945; during the Korean War (June 25, 1950 to Jan. 31, 1955); the Vietnam War (Feb. 28, 1961 to May 7, 1975); Lebanon/Grenada (Aug. 24, 1982 to July 31, 1984)); Panama (Dec. 20, 1989 to Jan. 31, 1990); or in the Persian Gulf/War on Terror starting on Aug. 2, 1990, to present. The Legion is also open to all current active-duty personnel until the cessation of hostilities, as determined by the U.S. government.

Belleville News-Democrat is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service