The American Legion Department of Tennessee

Nearly a decade has passed since The American Legion’s last national and departmental per-capita dues increase. During that span, the U.S. cost of living has climbed 28.4 percent.
With more than 3 million veterans of the global war on terrorism restarting civilian lives, or soon to do so, and looking to The American Legion for help, the National Executive Committee passed a resolution at the 2023 Spring Meetings in Indianapolis to recommend a $7 per-capita annual increase in national and departmental membership dues. It amounts to about 1.4 cents a day.
The NEC’s recommendation comes at a time when the need for American Legion advocacy, expertise, influence, services, and programs are sorely needed in every corner of our nation. Veterans are waiting too long for benefits claims decisions and medical appointments and need well-trained and accredited American Legion service officers right now and for years to come. Nearly 4,000 veterans sought help at about two dozen Veterans Benefits Center events over the last year where they received firsthand, on-the-spot assistance, including over $1 million in retroactive, past-due disability benefits.
The most obvious takeaway from those events is that veterans and their families need, and will continue to need, American Legion representation because the road to VA reform is certain to be long and fraught with challenges.
This is not a time to divest from The American Legion’s ability to serve veterans, members of the U.S. armed forces or young people. A national and departmental $7 per-capita dues increase can prevent National and Departmental Headquarters from having to cut programs and services over the course of an entire decade.
The natural attrition of veterans from early and mid-20th-century war eras has contributed greatly to a 16 percent drop in membership since the last dues increase passed.
Over a century has passed since The American Legion’s founders made their commitment to serve veterans, troops and families in their communities, states, and nation. American Legion members have never retreated from that commitment. At a time of war, a time of homecoming and a time of need among our nation’s veterans, families and young people, there is no better place to invest an extra $7 a year.

The NEC and the National Convention passed Resolution 1: Purchase of Multiple Years of Membership. The resolution approves “a five-year pilot program offering the purchase of three consecutive twelve month member terms at the then current dues rate”.
The pilot program will offer, “One-year, three-year and lifetime memberships,” said American Legion Finance Commission Chairman Gaither M. Keener Jr., who chaired the Legion’s Membership Study Committee created in October of 2022. At the conclusion of the pilot program, Keener said, “It will be reassessed and brought back to the NEC for its decision … whether to continue or discontinue, with factual information so you can make a logical decision.”
The pilot program will begin following modifications being made to the Legion’s member data system to allow for multi-year memberships.