In the early days of the Republic, Texas gave its veterans land in recognition of their military service. Spurred by returning World War II veterans, the Legislature established the Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB) in 1946 to continue this tradition by providing Texas veterans with long-term, low-interest land loans.
Today, the VLB oversees five veterans programs. The three-member governing body (Board) of the VLB is responsible for the administration of the Veterans Land Program, the Veterans Housing Assistance Program, the Veterans Home Improvement Program, the Texas State Veterans Homes Program, and the Texas State Veterans Cemetery Program.
Dawn Buckingham, M.D, Commissioner of the Texas General Land Office serves as Chairwoman of the Veterans Land Board and is joined by two governor appointed citizen board members. The citizen board members require confirmation by the Texas Senate and serve four-year overlapping terms. One of the Governor’s appointees must be well-versed in veterans affairs and the other experienced in finance. Judson Scott is a retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral. James Rothfelder is a portfolio manager in the investment banking industry. U.S. Army veteran Tony Dale is appointed by the board as the Executive Secretary responsible for day-to-day leadership and management of VLB programs.
As of January 2008, Board meetings are held on a quarterly basis, but special meetings may be called if necessary. Board meetings are open to the public and since 2005 have been webcast live.
Board meeting agendas are posted in the Texas Register and can be accessed via the Texas Secretary of State website. Agenda must be posted seven working days prior to a Board meeting.
Experience shows Texas veterans are a great investment. Even so, sometimes veterans can’t make the payments on their VLB loans and must forfeit their land. The Texas Veterans Land Board then makes these tracts of land available for other Texas veterans to bid on every January, April, July and October. Land that isn’t sold at these auctions is then available for public purchase.
- Dawn Buckingham, M.D., Chairwoman // January 2023 - Present
- Judson Scott // January 2023 - December 2026
- James Rothfelder // May 2023 - December 2024