VA chief of staff retires over report of ethical violations

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently saw yet another personnel shakeup amid internal strife. VA Secretary David Shulkin’s chief of staff resigned following accusations of ethical violations. The inspector general released a report that found she misled an ethics lawyer in order to get permission for Shulkin’s wife to join him on his taxpayer-funded Europe trip last year. Vivieca Wright Simpson was the department’s third most senior official. She announced her retirement in the aftermath of the report’s release. Wright Simpson stepped down after 32 years at the VA, including two years as the secretary’s senior-most aide. VA Inspector General Michael Missal issued recommendations for disciplining Wright Simpson over “serious derelictions” linked to Shulkin’s 10-day trip to London and Copenhagen in 2017. The report said she deceived an ethics official in an effort to get approval for the use of taxpayer money for…

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