Military Wiki
Bob Nimmo
Administrator of Veterans Affairs

In office
July 15, 1981 – January 5, 1983
President Ronald Reagan
Preceded by Max Cleland
Succeeded by Harry Walters
Personal details
Born (1922-02-05)February 5, 1922
Balboa, California, U.S.
Died November 7, 2005(2005-11-07) (aged 83)
Atascadero, California, U.S.
Political party Republican

Robert Nimmo (February 5, 1922 — November 7, 2005) was an American military officer and politician.

Life and career

Nimmo attended California Polytechnic State University before entering the United States Army Air Corps in 1940. He flew missions over France and Germany in World War II, but was shot down over Poland and interned in Sweden for 3 months. After returning to the U.S. he served as a flight instructor until the end of the war.[1]

After the war Nimmo joined the California National Guard, where he served until 1970. He commanded Camp San Luis Obispo and served as the United States Property & Fiscal Officer, and retired as a Colonel.[2]

A Republican, Nimmo served in the California State Assembly (1973 to 1977) and California State Senate (1977 to 1981).[3]

In 1981, President Ronald Reagan appointed Nimmo to head the Veterans' Administration, and he served until 1982. Nimmo was known for his preference for cutting funding for VA programs. He referred to veterans groups as "greedy", and to Agent Orange as not much worse than a "little teenage acne", although his supporters argued that these quotes were taken out of context.[4][5] His Deputy, Chuck Hagel, resigned in 1982 over disagreements with Nimmo.[6]

As VA Administrator Nimmo was also accused of excessive expenditures on redecorating his office, leasing an expensive sedan as his official vehicle, and improperly using the employee designated as his driver. Nimmo reimbursed the government more than $6,000 to compensate for the driver's unauthorized overtime.[7]

After returning to California, Nimmo remained active in civic causes and local government, including service on the Atascadero City Council and a term as the city's Mayor (June 26, 1990 to June 1994).[8]

External links


  1. Ellen Holland, Atascadero News, Resolution Dedicates Part of Highway 41 to Bob, Pat Nimmo , July 18, 2008
  2. San Luis Obispo Tribune, Atascadero's Public Servant Robert Nimmo Dies, November 9, 2005
  3. United Press International, Pittsburgh Press, Reagan Names VA Chief, May 1, 1981
  4. MacPherson, Myra, Long Time Passing: Vietnam and the Haunted Generation, Indiana University Press, 2001, p. xxxvi
  5. United Press International, Ben (Oregon) Bulletin, Unpopular Chief of veterans Administration Resigns, October 6, 1982
  6. Associated Press, Bangor Daily News, Two Veterans Head List for Chief of VA, October 18, 1982
  7. Associated Press, Toledo Blade, VA Administrator Reimburses U.S., June 16, 1982
  8. San Luis Obispo Tribune, Obituary, Bob Nimmo, November 12, 2005
Political offices
Preceded by
Max Cleland
Administrator of Veterans Affairs
Succeeded by
Harry Walters

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