Bikers: VFW Riders Groups: New National VFW Rules Open the Door to Formation

April 7, 2011 in Judge Advocate, WI VFW News

Spring is, at long last, in the air. One sure sign of that arrival is the steady increase in the number of motorcycles appearing each day on the streets and highways of Wisconsin. With their arrival comes renewed interest in forming VFWRG’s (VFW Rider Groups).

Here's a photo from a few years back. That's me with my old dog "Journey" perched on the back of an '83 GL650. She never rode with me, but she loved to hop up and pose for pictures! She's gone and so is the 650, but I have an older Goldwing now... and a beagle.

The how’s and wherefore’s of such sanctioned groups has been under intense study by VFW National of late because there are many important points to be considered before the VFW, at any level, can become involved in such activities. Veteran of Foreign Wars Motorcycle Riders Groups/Associations, henceforth referred to as VFWRG, [are now permissible] pursuant to mandate of the 111th National Convention, Resolution 308, adopted August 23, 2010. However, before you just run off and announce your new Riders Group, you will be required to download the official instructions for doing so, and complete an application which must be approved first by the Department Commander and then passed to VFW National for the Commander-in-Chief’s approval. The guidelines specify who can belong to the group, what standards of membership/ownership/insurance are required, and a review/approval process for any proposed “patch” or logo. You may download the National Guidelines here, or on our Wisconsin VFW Downloadable Forms Page, where you will also find the appropriate Post or District application forms, listed under National Forms & Information.

Because these forms and guidelines are subject to periodic updating and/or modification, we strongly recommend that you make sure you have the latest copy in hand before proceeding. Revised documents will automatically be available on our Downloadable Forms Page as they are received from National.

I am a rider myself, so I find this an exciting prospect for the Veterans of Foreign Wars and I look forward to potentially joining a VFW Riders Group. Let’s ride… but let’s do it right!