2000 to Present

Together we're stronger

The controversial 2000 election kicks off this decade when George W. Bush and Vice President Al Gore hold a virtual dead-heat for the presidency. Natural disasters, the political climate, and war are at the forefront. On September 11, 2001, Islamic fundamentalist terrorists hijack four US airliners and crash three of them into the Pentagon and the World Trade Center in New York City. Soon after the terrorist attacks, the United States is at war in Afghanistan. The Space Shuttle Columbia explodes upon re-entry over Texas and all seven astronauts inside are killed. On March 19, 2003, the war in Iraq begins with the bombing of Baghdad. Following a 9.3 Richter scale earthquake in the Indian Ocean, a Southeast Asian tsunami occurs and more than 290,000 people die. A worldwide relief effort is mobilized to assist. Hurricane Katrina devastates New Orleans and the Gulf Coast region with massive destruction and loss of lives. American cyclist Lance Armstrong wins his record 7th straight Tour de France. The one billionth song is downloaded from the internet music store, Apple iTunes, at the expense of many brick and mortar chains, including Tower Records. Michael Jackson dies in his home in California. One of the original members of the National Military Family Association’s Board of Advisors, Senator Ted Kennedy, passes away in August 2009. Sesame Street creates two prime time specials “When Parents are Deployed” and “Coming Home: Military Families Coping with Change” airing on PBS. The H1N1 virus, named the Swine Flu, is deemed a global pandemic by the World Health Organization. America elects Barack Obama, the first African-American President. Reality shows dominate the small screen turning every day people into celebrities. Staying in touch with friends and loved ones becomes easier through Facebook, Skype, and Twitter. Americans become fascinated with the lives of "Army Wives.” The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, underscore the strength and resolve of military families and the Nation. The National Military Family Association is more visible now than ever and continues to champion the rights of military families.

  • Association leads the charge to end the Social Security offset to the Survivor Benefit Plan, gets Women, Infants and Children (WIC) funding overseas authorized, and increases the benefits provided to survivors of all active duty deaths
  • The McCormick Foundation provides a grant to the Association to fund the VS&R department’s Professional Development Program
  • TRICARE for Life begins
  • Association creates the Joanne Holbrook Patton Spouse Scholarship Program and publishes the Military Spouse Education Resource Guide
  • In 2004, Operation Purple® Camp begins
  • Association publishes Serving the Homefront: An Analysis of Military Family Support and the Cycles of Deployment reports paving the way for our large-scale research project on military children, caregivers, and deployment
  • Post 9/11 GI Bill passes fulfilling an Association dream that began in 1981 when we first supported a provision to the GI Bill permitting a service member to transfer educational benefits to a spouse or child after 10 years of service
  • Association is a member of the drafting team that created the Interstate Compact for the Educational Opportunity for Military Children covering more than 430,000 military children 
  • Almost one third of the Association’s current employees are former Association Volunteers







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Until military families are relieved of the weight of war, we hope you will continue to contribute to their wellbeing.

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