Peter O'Rourke Demotion

Getting Fired? VA Secretary Wilkie Demotes O’Rourke, Revokes Years Of Agency Delegations Impacting Terminations

One of the first acts of the newly minted VA Secretary was to revoke almost ten years of delegations of authority performed by various Chief of Staff over the years just before demoting the former acting secretary.

The revocation memorandum with the subject line “Rescission of Delegations of Authority” was addressed to his under secretaries, assistant secretaries, and other key officials. It revoked authority previously delegated for seven purposes:

  1. Delegation of Authority to Review and Sign an Agency Report to the Office of Special Counsel
  2. Delegation of Authority to Make Determinations on “No Action” Recommendations Regarding Senior Executive Service and Title 38 Senior Executive Equivalent Employees
  3. Delegation of Authority for Disciplinary Actions Relating to Intentional Discrimination and Retaliation
  4. Delegation of Authority to Sign on Behalf of the Secretary
  5. Delegation of Authority to Approve Personnel Actions
  6. Delegation of Authority to Approve All Permanent Change of Station/Relocation Actions
  7. Delegation of Authority for Rulemaking, Notices, and Significant Guidance Documents

Any employee being terminated under some authority derived from the revoked delegations needs to pay attention.

The author of Wilkie’s memo cited the authorities of 38 USC § 512 and VA Directive 0000 Delegations of Authority.

Out With The Old, In With The New

While the revocation came out a week ago, today’s agency announcement concerning leadership changes carries significant implications:

  • Pamela Powers will become VA Chief of Staff.  Powers is a retired Air Force Colonel and previously served with Secretary Wilkie as the Chief of Staff for the Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness;
  • Peter O’Rourke will become a Senior Advisor at VA.  O’Rourke previously served as VA Chief of Staff, and most recently was Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
  • Jacquelyn Hayes-Byrd will become Acting Assistant Secretary for Human Resources and Administration.  She was previously VA Deputy Chief of Staff, and served most recently as Acting Chief of Staff at VA.
  • Chris Syrek will become VA Deputy Chief of Staff.  Syrek was previously Executive Director of State and Local Government Relations, and served most recently as Acting Deputy Chief of Staff at VA

New COS Pamela Powers

Wilkie brought his own Chief of Staff (COS) over from DOD to VA. Prior to the personnel change announcement yesterday, the secretary saw to it that a substantial number of delegations going back almost 10 years were revoked. This is a sign that someone under the previous COS may have been covering up a great number of personnel actions likely including not firing bad actors delegated to previous underlings of past COS.

Remember Peter O’Rourke?

He was just pushed to the back of the bus. Rather than keeping O’Rourke at Chief of Staff or Deputy Secretary, Wilkie put O’Rourke back on the shelf of advisors.

This may be a sign that Wilkie was not onboard with some of O’Rourke’s actions over the past two months including committing perjury and purging agency leadership.

RELATED: Agency Purge Shakes Up VA

Trump previously selected O’Rourke to serve as the COS just prior to Shulkin’s termination after O’Rourke stood up the Office of (no) Accountability. He then led VA as the acting secretary, which was short lived.

O’Rourke is now back to simply advisor status at the agency among all the other advisors. Wilkie’s move, at least to the public, appears to be a firm demotion from essentially CEO to, well, staff.

RELATED: Acting VA Secretary Referred To DOJ For Investigation

I guess the congressional referral to DOJ after O’Rourke made false statements to Congress had a definite career impact, at least that is how it looks from the outside. What do you think about the moves? Any insight into the agency’s delegation revocation?

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  1. The action by the secretary is short-sighted and one would imagine that he re-issues letters allowing delegation. For example, the secretary delegates to a hospital the ability of the hospital administrator to hire a doctor. The article indicates that the sec’y has removed that delegated authority meaning that every hire will have to be approved specifically by the secretary. Moreover, the way that the letter from the sec’y office suggests that the only person who will be able to sign contracts or pay invoices is the secretary. This is just a cluster.

  2. The United States Corporation of America is TREASONOUS to American Veterans and the Department of Veterans Affairs exemplifies such allegations. Article 1and 2, branches of government have NO accountability, and U.S. Citizens are nothing but property vested to the corporate body and used as commercial energy for the ponzi scheme of Federal Reserve Notes that are controlled by the U.N.’s IMF and BIS.

    I implore anyone who is “patriotic” towards the federal government, to read “Fruits of a Poisonous Tree,” by Mel Stamper, read various sections of the United States Code, and comprehend that the corporate body of the Federal Government is TREASONOUS to the Constitution of the United States and U.S. Citizens are considered enemies of the state via “National Emergency Banking Act of 1933,” “Trading with the Enemy Act, of 1917” and whatever other legislative banking act and commerical legislation signed into law. The United States of America is a Republic No One lives in, and is a democratic illusion that is now crumbling into oblivion because of the treasonous actions of Congress throughout the decades.

    The Department of Veterans Affairs is a money laundering rackeet, veteran population control mechanism and a propaganda scheme. The Department of Veterans Affairs is not going to change for the best interest of veterans and anyone who harbors the false hope that the VA will change for the greater good, is delusional and may as well keep eating the poison being fed to them by the Rockefeller medical system used to control and dumb down the masses. The joke is on gullible mind slaves aka the U.S. Citizens and what a evil and cruel joke it is.

  3. Breaking News: The VA and RAND Corp. have teamed-up. along with a VA Regional Troll named ‘WTF OVER’, and The Million Veteran Program, to bottle the tears of Veterans so that the politicians and wall streeters can experience PURE HELL in a bottle, extracted with indifference, only in the VA way.

    Get yours now, quantities are limited to 22+ Veterans a day, gross. Place your orders at WTF.OVER.GOV

    Patient Advocates are NOT standing by to take your call….

  4. Neurontin (gabapentin) Lawsuit results in 142M in damages against Pfizer, violated U.S. racketeering laws.

  5. It’s a damn disgrace when a Veteran whose disabled, that can’t get decent medical care from his local VA facility. The concerns are minimal compared to the distrust, and one that fears for his health and life.

    And now forced to have have his spouse work her butt off, so that I can obtain private healthcare. VA has caused the members of my household, including my service dog, way to much frustration, anxiety, confusion, circle jerking, misled and lied too, manipulation of medications, accusations of testing positive for other that prescribe medications but can’t name them, and the cancellation of all in-home medical and behavioral health care.

    I’ve filed complaints to my VA PCP, Director, WH’s Veteran Hotline, and many emails to POTUS. No responses in return. So, all this and that about the VA is nothing but busy bodies doing nothing, but putting on a show, and keeping those who are watching or using VA services, to be amused by the VA’s dance varieties depending upon the occasion.

    VA can talk all they want, Press Release this or that, or whatever. I’ll not even begin to trust the VA, until I hear of, see and read, an outlined call for implementing changes of VA healthcare and claims processes. And a plan that receives praises from seasoned Veterans on this platform.

    Until then, VA is not to be trusted. Cover your butt. Always try to have someone with you when seeing a VA Medical Provider.

    And where the fuck is our Politicians, Committee Members, and VA Overseers at?

    Damn kids, hold on for a sec . . . “You kids, I told you to keep your grimy hands out of the cookie jar. No stupid, the one without a lid on it, stay out of it.”

    When are the REAL Influential and Power Players of the VA? You know, the ones who care about Veterans, and are going to make a stand, but not be moved for righteousness? All about the money and power. Shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.

  6. They can kiss my boot!!!

    Who cares?

    Every administration and/or few years they do the same musical chairs and nothing changes.

    I am not for privatization or guberment. I’m for “choices” (and not the current Choice program – where money is wasted). My “choices” is where the veteran is allowed to go to his/her desired provider – not from some .gov list that is manged by corrupt .gov contractors. “Choice” creates “competition” – which will hopefully drive down the cost of medical services.

    Why do people have competition for services and pricing for cosmetic medical services? Uh, because it isn’t mandatory (like Obamacare). Get guberment out of the mix and force the healthcare industry to be more reasonable with cost of care.

    The VA is a big taxpayer money pit – all under the guise of serving veterans (to pull on your heart/purse strings for funding). The VA, VSOs, AFGE and Obamacare need to be dismantled – plain and simple.

  7. Here’s another article out from;
    “” via: “Stars and Stripes” over the New Suckretary of VA!
    (Don’t forget to read the one comment after the article!)

    “VA Shuffles Leadership; Former Acting Secretary Retained as Senior Adviser”

    From: “Stars and Stripes”
    Dated: 14 Aug 2018
    By: Nikki Wentling

    “WASHINGTON — Peter O’Rourke, who became embroiled in multiple controversies during his short time as acting secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, will stay on as a senior adviser to new VA Secretary Robert Wilkie, the VA announced Monday.”

    “Wilkie, sworn into the job two weeks ago, listed several changes he’s made to his leadership team. O’Rourke will maintain a top position at the VA, bucking rumors that Wilkie would reassign him to a less visible role.”

    “Our veterans deserve the best, and that is what we are doing by bringing together a talented leadership team to serve them at VA,” Wilkie said in the prepared statement.”

    “During his two months as acting secretary, O’Rourke engaged in a public feud with the VA inspector general and was accused of lying during a congressional hearing. In addition, Democrats in the Senate asked for an investigation of O’Rourke following news reports that he was purging employees who were perceived as disloyal to President Donald Trump.”

    “O’Rourke, a former Trump campaign staffer, has been with the VA for a year and a half. He was assigned as a senior adviser to former VA Secretary David Shulkin after Trump’s inauguration. O’Rourke was then chosen to lead the new Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, which has recently come under scrutiny after allegations that it’s being used to retaliate against whistleblowers and target low-level employees.”

    “In February, O’Rourke was tapped to take over as VA chief of staff. He started his two-month stint as acting VA secretary in May.”

    “A Washington Post report in July casted doubt on O’Rourke’s future at the agency. It suggested O’Rourke and his leadership team would be sidelined.”

    “ProPublica, a nonprofit news agency, reported last week that a trio of wealthy members of Trump’s private club in Palm Beach, Fla., are effectively running the VA in secret. According to the report, O’Rourke gained their approval.”

    “Other leadership positions that Wilkie announced Monday were the VA chief of staff, deputy chief of staff and acting assistant secretary for human resources and administration.”

    “Wilkie previously worked at the Pentagon as the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness. He’s bringing over a staff member from that position, retired Air Force Col. Pamela Powers, to serve as VA chief of staff.”

    “Chris Syrek, the acting deputy chief of staff, will become the VA’s permanent deputy chief of staff. He worked previously as the director of state and local government relations for the VA.”

    “Jacquelyn Hayes-Byrd was named as the acting assistant secretary for human resources and administration. She formerly held the position of VA deputy chief of staff, and for about two months, she’s been working as acting VA chief of staff.”

    “According to the VA’s statement, the leadership changes will take effect shortly.”

    “These leadership changes will build upon a strong current team that will continue to carry out the priorities of President Trump and newly appointed Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert Wilkie,” the statement reads.”

    I tex3 hours ago: Jared Kushner has been tasked by the president to run the VA. As senior advisor he knows how to do this after he has successfully unloaded the mortgage on his 666 5th Avenue building. Apparently has a mortgage of 1 .2 billion dollars on a building that is only worth $400. He is a genius as he is found somebody to buy his building and relieve his debt thank you president Trump I wonder how much he paid these people off and government contracts.

  8. @ WyldeChylde
    In all fairness, I think that the only thing you can do is to put it in the search engines and see what leads you to what ever answers your questions. There really is no shortcut for “we folk” that is going to give us the thorough answers that we seek, because they get to enjoy privacy and such things.

    I do know that “they” will try to get away with evaluations using lesser qualified persons to stall proceedings, until your good lawyer jumps on them for doing just that.

    1. Interesting that today Dr. Oz has a story about a Nigerian “doctor” using the last name Akoda, that was hired by and worked at more than one legitimate civilian hospital, under several types of false ID, certificates, SS cards, passports, etc., as an OB-GYN delivering hundreds of babies over several years. To your question WyldeChylde, even Dr. Oz said (I’m paraphrasing here) that even the professionals have great difficulty finding the validity of foriegn educated “doctors”. I hope you do find answers.

  9. WTF OVER?… “You obviously have no fucking idea how many honest, dedicated, service connected vets work for this agency”…..LOL…..You must be tucked in a closet somewhere, Because all I’v ever encountered was a bunch of lying MF”ers
    Look at your PR book and find another line that’s a little more convincing…… That one stinks…….

  10. To:
    “WTF OVER”,
    When was the last time you stood in front of your superiors and “claimed WHISTLEBLOWER status”?
    NEVER is what I’m thinking!
    Your just like ALL the other blowhard assholes who come on here, and other get centric sites, and say what great work you do. Then put the blame on upper management!
    The “myriad of EXCUSES” we hear are endless. Over why they don’t want to rock the boat!
    Maybe, if everyone at all VA’s were to believe their jobs were in jepardy. We veterans might get better healthcare and claims would be adjudicated quicker and correctly!

    So, until you can come up with a plan, how about you just “shutting the fuck up, asshole!” Your comment means absolutely nothing this morning!


  11. V.A. Titanic Deckchairs having their asses moved around from one poop deck to another.

    Gurgle? Rotten cabbage this early in morning…someone with a funny hat must be running scared from VA Kryptonite called accountability or a passive-aggressive regional troll with a god syndrome? Both?

  12. so I put the question out there yesterday but I don’t think it got seen. So, here it is again. I need to track down the credentials of the VA quack that did my C&P exam last week. How do I go about doing that.

    1. WC …I don’t know the answer to your Question but you might want to read this
      14 Lies/Myths That Big Pharma and Their Paid Academic Psychiatrists Teach Medical Students

    2. I wish i knew the answer too. VA quacks get way to much cover, about all i know right now is there are sites where reviews, and comment can be written about these VA quacks, etc, Healthgrades was the only place that i was able to write a review about a VA Dr., probably know this, but thought I’d mention it But i know you want their credentials and so do i, Guess we’ll have to keep looking,

  13. To Wtf loser,

    your statement “I’ll be sure to remember your foolish, ignorant rant. SMFH!!”, makes me want to say Fuck off piss ant.

    Anyone who has been working at the VA is nothing but a contributor to the havoc, carnage, suffering in Veterans lives and deaths of Veterans caused by the VA. Without exception. Every fricken one of you knew what was going on and did little to nothing to prevent it.

    Many of you have come to these pages claiming to be the one fighting the good fight from within but you are nothing more than a Collaborator. Those in the regional office are some of the most heinous pieces of shit at the VA.

    The facts are that the VA is the most corrupt department in America so fuck you and anyone who works there you fucking piss ant.

    1. Seymore,
      Can you guess what computer “WTF OVER” was using to spread his/her/its bullshit?
      Bet he/she/it was at work spreading that bullshit!
      Guess he/she/it would rather come on here and slam Dennis, and other veterans, than do his/her/its taxpayers funded job at VA!

      1. Given the piece of shit stated “Thanks for a great start to my day working at a VA regional office”. Clearly she-he-it is at work on the taxpayers dime while cruising the internet and no doubt using VA property, connection and taxpayers time to do it.

        Although I note that the time she-he-it claims he is just starting his day at work is at 3:59 am. Also from it’s statements it is clear it is totally full of shit anyway.

  14. “All VA employees should be fired and case loads transferred away from the most corrupt agency America has ever seen.”

    You obviously have no fucking idea how many honest, dedicated, service connected vets work for this agency – perhaps as minions compared to these empty suits at the top, but never the less – patriotic Americans who devote hard work to get their fellow vets paid and taken care of! (Yes that was one hell of a sentence) How damn ignorant can you be to post something like that? You sir have no friggin idea what you’re talking about in the first place w your dumb little picture here!

    Thanks for a great start to my day working at a VA regional office, where I put in a true 8-10 hours of honest work helping my fellow sc vets! When I see tears of joy in their eyes out of pure thanks, I’ll be sure to remember your foolish, ignorant rant. SMFH!!

    1. Actually we do know how many honest, dedicated, service connected vets work for this agency. Not enough. Apparently you’ve been hiding under a rock when it comes to the bullshit your employer pulls.

      Hard working, patriotic, VA employees. Sorry, that animal doesn’t exist.

      Thanks for a great 4 and a half years of bullshit lies and chain jerking on my claim. Sorry your day sucks. Maybe you should stop laying down with dogs you fucking tool.

      1. All those goodie two shoes veterans who stay silent are no better than the crooks themselves.

        Coming in and just doing your job isn’t enough. The crooks get away with stuff because “good o’l people who work in the VA” stay silent.

        Now granted, the way they go after whistleblowers and how the courts affirm these atrocities would frighten Freddy Kruger, but please, I do not see people who stand by in silence as the wonderful people who work at the VA (and hence, why the VA should stay open)

    2. Talk about a “blubbering idiot.” Kudos to those doing their perceived best, with best intentions, some actually doing a job, but it still isn’t good enough. Stand up and be counted as a ‘good one.’

      You don’t mention what VA regional office YOU work at. AFGE or what?

      How far would you, or do you go to protect those evil doers in YOUR team or office? What or how much have you ignored or know about and remain silent? Fess up.

      How can it be that so many fall in-line to continue on with cover-ups, the retaliations that may go far beyond any VA system? What would you do? Have done? Especially when *shit can run from clinic to clinic, cubical to cubical, office to office, staff to staff, clique to clique, team to team, CBOC to hospital and all around, one PA to the other, one MD to another, cover-up to cover-up, a stab here a stab and lie there, and on it goes. No breaks in the chain of evils or corruption. Seems the majority of evil doers rule the VA and their networks of filth. Oh and VA to civvy care even. Especially when knowing or reading about what some vets endure or what some of us out here have had to. Folks out here waiting years for something to happen??? And not a thing to be done about it. Not A ONE so-called “minion” or suit to stand up to the links in the corrupted chain of the “VA team” for some common decency, humanity or ethics.

      I’ve seen tears a plenty and they weren’t from being joyful. Big difference sitting at a desk pushing papers, cognitive dissonance, playing happy team mate, trained not to care or get emotionally involved, to whatever, and sitting next to death beds or spending years out in the gutters and streets with people. Or dealing with countless issues up close and very personal with ALL not wanting to get involved or showing smiles of pure enjoyment through the obvious, intentional, uncaring sadistic treatment.

      You also failed to offer up a job description so allow my mind to run wild. It can take a bunch of people to ensure no VA staff is harmed, corruption and wrong doing is kept out of the news, and whistle-blowers in a corrupted state to remain silent… or else. You want silence from the severely oppressed, suffering and attacked? The beat goes on.

      ‘When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.*’ (Females too) And the losers are!!! Countless veterans! Easy to see what one bad potato can do to the rest in the bag. The suffering, no access to needed meds, the body count of vets this week AGAIN is … ??? Lest we forget those suicides trying to draw attention to it all. Oh don’t mean nuthin’. We are all supposed to have and keep short memories…. and go lay down in silence.

      Also. Like with media and high offices to appease movements and quotas are not helping matters or will bring about much change either. Just more politics and activist showing. Kinda like.. all other actors to flip-floppers…

      Ben’s blog and other attempts for things to go public or hit the public’s nerve hasn’t worked in or out of the VA. That shows who we are dealing with in the media, colleges, VSOs, various do-gooder groups, phony politicians, etc. Also the very very long list of people who allow all the attacks and evil to continue. While raking in the benefits and secure positions.

    3. And when we Veterans go to the Clinics and Hospitals for service and have to sit and wait for 8 Fking HOURS for medication, or have some idiot refuse to fill a prescription that the VA Doctor ORDERED, or have to wait for over 6 months to get a freaking appointment only to be told there is nothing that they will do. Or to go to a pain clinic full of hope that you will be granted a chance to see if the new medication will work for you, only to be told that the doctor did a 180 degree turn and now is refusing to even allow you to have it. And you call these people hard working? What kind of shit are you smoking moron???

    4. You’re lying garbage and in bed with the enemy.

      Won’t fool any if us dipshit.

    5. Well how many times does it take to get poked in the behind to find out not pregnant? Working so hard 8-10 hours a day, hilarious. You have no idea what hard work is and yet you convinced yourself not only you do work hard, but are reading this at work and now because someone made a comment you can’t operate. With a pocket full of shells

    6. Work in the regional office and you don’t know whats going on, you ass kissin, butt lickin fuck, Your an incompetent fool and part of the problem. You work 8-10, hours a day, bullshit, maybe 7, takes a hour to feed your fat lying ass. Go ahead shake your fuckin head, hear anything rattling around up there, I do. Fuck you OUT

    7. WTF – gotta admit – you got me with the “tears in their eyes thing”. I was so moved, I went out and put my flag up, this time not upside-down. Kinda made me want to sing.

      Everything is beautiful,
      Like a starry summer night
      On a snow covered winter’s day….

      C’mon everybody – sing-a-long.

      I haven’t felt this good in ages. I think I’ll go out and fuck me unicorn.

      WTF is right

    8. My opinion certainly solicited an angry response. I am sorry if I hurt your feelings. Next time I promise to be more considerate in the words that I choose for the dedicated men and women who have done so very much for and to American vets and have solicited so very many tears of joy in your presence. I would certainly think they would be willing to kiss your ring too as the tears ran down their little Cherub faces. Good golly I really should rethink my opinion about VA just based on your first few sentences towards me. Well thought out and to the point for a VA guy. Now just turn me into the DBC and your yearly bonus is assured.

      Still though my opinion remains. To work at VA and not understand or ignore the level of sheer incompetence that surrounds and pervades the most corrupt of agencies means that you are destined for VA management. Just remember VA policy and plead the fifth when congress demands to know why you have lied, cheated, and stolen and by God the tears of joy at being released under your own recognizance will pale compared the the multitudes of veterans breaking down in tears of joy and thanks right at your very feet as you have claimed. It brings a tear of hope to my eye just thinking about it and by God even constipated I believe now I can pinch one off in salute to your ongoing heroic efforts at bringing joy to veterans.

      You are management material for sure there skippy, just keep the attitude, keep people crying, and keep being proud of being what it is you became when you became a mouthpiece for VA.

    9. –> I’ll be sure to remember your foolish, ignorant rant. SMFH!!<–

      If that's a threat, be advised, I can't speak for anyone else, but I have the means to track you down and expose your identity, you cowardly anonymous vampire parasite

      1. It is a tribute to the Veteran that nothing violent has happened yet ,, I wonder why We don’t hear of more incidents at the VA?
        Just saying That I pray it stays that way .last thing We need is the VA having an excuse to further limit accessibility to the facilities . by the way what does SMFH mean?

  15. Well at least he still has the freedom to go potty by himself…. Another key government patriot standing ready to give the veterans the very best and who believe they deserve it good and hard.

    The people are worms through and through. The agency became a magnet for treachery, deception, intimidaton, malfeasance and all sorts of criminality towards America. We talk about rescisions of authority, and demotions, and politics and…. and…. and….

    and the truth is no power of Earth can fix this den of despair for veterans. We ALL have decided that vets are not good enough to go out into the country and get what they earned like others who have earned social compensation. Vets are the dogs and even the hospital staff pleads and begs to stop treating vets like vermin. But the fix is in.

    America is content to let vets rot in their beds, vomit the raw chicken up they get served, then putting an armed guard on the ones who vomit up what America’s best care served them. Tainted blood. Massive bungling on an epic scale. Massive civil rights abuses. And abslutely NONE of this is news! This is generations old now and the monster must be put down or it will continue to grow and destroy everymore as it always has.

    VA must be dismantled and all services desegregated into one SSA account. All VA employees should be fired and case loads transferred away from the most corrupt agency America has ever seen.

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