Veterans Affairs Committee

Ira Brownridge Jr., Chair
Retired Army Specialist served from 1996 to 1999 in the U.S. Army and served in the National Guard from 2005 to 2008.  Deployed to Bosnia and Iraq earning his C.I.B. and a Purple Heart.  Worked with Team RNB and now serves on the Washtenaw County Department of Veterans Affairs Committee.

Shastri Booth, Vice Chair

Mike Favre, Committee Member
U.S. Army SPC from 1989 to 1992, Infantry

Joshua McAllister, Committee Member

Kate Melcher, Committee Member
Served in the U.S. Army from 2005 to 2020.  Kate Melcher began her career in a research and speech writing position with the Supreme Court of the United States. Later, she would serve in the US Senate, as senior staff to three different US Senators.

After September 11, she left the Senate to enlist in the Army. She became an Apache Helicopter pilot, and a Legislative Liaison Officer for the US Army National Guard. Ms. Melcher is a seasoned military, non-profit, and private sector professional, with a passion for public service.

Since moving home to Michigan in 2017, she has had the privilege of serving as Executive Director for Fisher House Michigan. In this role, she and the FHM Board of Directors are responsible for raising funds and awareness to support Fisher Houses in Michigan. Additionally, she serves in leadership roles in other organizations promoting Veteran welfare, including Region 9 Veteran Community Action Team, Association of the United States Army, Women in Defense - Michigan, and Veterans Radio America.

Among her awards and accolades for her service, Governor Snyder named Kate the 2018 Michigan Veteran of the Year. In 2022, the Daughters of the American Revolution named her an Outstanding Woman in American History.