In honor of Veterans Day, the Junior Aid Association of Malden joined forces with the 2022 Massachusetts Outstanding Female Veteran of the Year, Malden native Gina Rada, to donate household items to Bedford Green. Bedford Green is a 55+ Veterans Supportive Housing complex with 69 furnished apartment homes that offer permanent, supportive housing for homeless Veterans and those at imminent risk of homelessness in Bedford, Mass.
In September, Rada was the guest speaker at Junior Aid Association of Malden’s monthly meeting. She discussed her career as the current District Director for Lexington, Bedford and Carlisle Veterans’ Services. In her role, Rada serves as a dedicated advocate and provides a wide range of services to local area veterans, from helping them apply for service-connected disabilities and financial assistance through the Chapter 115 program to connecting them with various other available resources.
Before her time as a Veteran Services Officer and advocate, Rada graduated from Malden High School in 2002 and then served Active Duty in the United States Air Force for six years. Rada achieved the rank of Staff Sergeant before separating honorably in 2008. She had a decorated career as an Aerospace Medical Service Technician, receiving numerous commendations, such as the John L. Levitow Award, Army Commendation Medal, Air Force Good Conduct Medal and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. Gina was stationed at several stateside locations, eventually deploying for one year to Afghanistan, where she served as a member of a Provincial Reconstruction Team & senior medic on 55 Ground Assault Convoys.
The Department of Veterans’ Services presented Gina Rada with the 2022 Deborah Sampson Award. The Deborah Sampson Award from the Department of Veterans’ Services Women Veterans’ Network recognizes a Female Veteran who has gone above and beyond to serve Women Veterans throughout the year and is named after the Massachusetts-born Revolutionary War heroine Deborah Sampson.
“It was an honor for our organization to team up with Ms. Rada for this Service Project. Malden should be proud of all she has accomplished as a Female Veteran. Our deepest thanks go out to all Veterans for their service, their selflessness, and their courage. They are the heart of this country and fought for our freedoms,” said Junior Aid Association of Malden President Susan Higgins. “We hope these donations are enjoyed by the many Veterans that receive support at Bedford Green. We also thank our members for their continued generosity and support.”