Get Assistance With Filing Your VA Claims

The VAC Veteran Service Officers of Kankakee County will assist you with your Department of Veteran Affairs claims. These claims for non-service connected pension or service-connected disabilities will be processed in a professional and compassionate manner. You, the veteran, helped assure our freedoms and it is our responsibility to give back. The task that’s ahead of you will never be as great as the power that’s behind you.

We will answer your questions, prepare the needed documents, help you secure any necessary supporting documents, and provide follow-up services on your pending claim.


Offering Claims assistance for the following

  • VA Healthcare Claims
  • VA Compensation Claims
  • VA Pension Claims
  • VA Aid & Attendance
  • VA Burial Benefit Assistance
  • VA Survivors Pension and Dependency And Indemnity Compensation
  • Obtain discharge papers (DD214)
  • Presidential Certificates
  • Cold War Certificates
  • Obtain Medals, Awards & Ribbons

Our Veteran Service Officers are accredited with NACVSO, American Legion, & DAV


Meet Our Team

Karen Smietanski

Karen Smietanski is the daughter of a US Navy WWII veteran. She was raised in a small farm town south of Springfield. Karen graduated from Robert Morris college with an Associates Degree in Business Management. Her passion as always been in helping people. Never in a million years did she know that would lead her to helping veterans every day. Karen is the Assistant Superintendent at the Veterans Assistance Commission of Kankakee County, where she has worked since 2009. She is the Court Coordinator for the 21st Jurisdiction for the Veterans Treatment Court. She also graduated from the National Association of Drug Court Professionals Justice for Vets Mentor Boot Camp in 2013. Just over three years ago (2017), Karen was invited to try out to become a National Trainer for County Veteran Service Officers. Now, she gets to teach people from all over the country the job she loves. Karen’s Federal Accreditation allows her to help veterans file claims with the Department of Veterans Affairs for disability, pension, survivor’s pension, and death benefits.

David Conway

David Conway, veteran’s service officer, is a US Army disabled vet. Serving from 2009 to 2014 with a deployment to Iraq for a year. After service, he went to college receiving an Associates Degree in Criminal Justice. During his time in college, he worked as a VA work-study at the VAC. Working at the VAC lead David to know that helping other disabled veterans was what he really wanted to do. He says he wants to “help other veterans to not feel overwhelmed like I did when I got out”. He has been on staff since February of 2019. Learning is a passion of his. David is married with 2 wonderful daughters.