"Tiger Team" of ABI's Task Force on Veterans and Servicemembers Affairs Receives Prestigious ABI Service Award

"Tiger Team" of ABI's Task Force on Veterans and Servicemembers Affairs Receives Prestigious ABI Service Award

Alexandria, Va. — The American Bankruptcy Institute presented members of the “Tiger Team” of ABI’s Task Force on Veterans and Servicemembers Affairs with its highest membership award, the ABI Annual Service Award, at the 2022 Annual Spring Meeting on April 29, 2022. The Service Award is presented to an ABI member or members whose contributions over the past year have been extraordinary, as determined by ABI’s advisory board of past presidents. Borrowing from military terminology meaning a specialized, cross-functional team brought together to solve a specific problem or critical issue, members of the Task Force’s Tiger Team worked to pass the “Honoring American Veterans in Extreme Need (HAVEN) Act of 2019.” The HAVEN Act, which was signed into law on Aug. 23, 2019, provided a fix to the Bankruptcy Code to exclude VA and DoD disability payments from the monthly income calculation used for bankruptcy means-testing. Prior to the HAVEN Act, a veteran may have had to contribute some portion of his or her disability benefits to pay creditors. The enactment of the HAVEN Act now exempts VA and DoD disability payments made to veterans or their dependent survivors earned in defense of our country, just as Social Security benefits are exempted from bankruptcy means-testing. Members of the Tiger Team include:

  • Rachel Albanese of DLA Piper (New York)
  • Jay Bender of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP (Birmingham, Ala.)
  • Holly Petraeus, Assistant Director (ret.) at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Office of Servicemember Affairs (Washington, D.C.)
  • Kristina Stanger of Nyemaster Goode PC (Des Moines, Iowa)
  • John H. Thompson of McGuireWoods LLP (Washington, D.C.)

The mission of ABI’s Task Force on Veterans and Servicemembers Affairs is to unite and effectively deploy the best of the varied talent resources within ABI to understand, respond to and coordinate with other institutions and organizations to educate, remediate and prevent adverse debt concerns and impacts on veterans and service members to ensure that we financially strengthen those who strengthen us with the respect and dignity they deserve. The Task Force has two major goals: The passage of the HAVEN Act, and developing the military equivalent of a list of volunteers trained to help veterans and current service members better understand credit issues (a financial insolvency education process), as well as providing additional outreach efforts both within and outside of ABI.


ABI is the largest multi-disciplinary, nonpartisan organization dedicated to research and education on matters related to insolvency. ABI was founded in 1982 to provide Congress and the public with unbiased analysis of bankruptcy issues. The ABI membership includes nearly 10,000 attorneys, accountants, bankers, judges, professors, lenders, turnaround specialists and other bankruptcy professionals, providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and information. For additional information on ABI, visit www.abiworld.org. For additional conference information, visit http://www.abiworld.org/conferences.html.