VA nurses recently received an unexpected gift, thanks to Nike. The multinational footwear and apparel manufacturer donated nearly 3,800 pairs of Air Zoom Pulse shoes to VHA nurses on the frontlines battling COVID-19.

While roughly 1,300 pairs were received by VHA’s Disaster Emergency Medical Personnel System (DEMPS) volunteers dispatched to COVID hot spots, the others were sent to healthcare workers who have been implementing innovative care solutions at their home facilities.

VA’s Secretary’s Center for Strategic Partnerships (SCSP) collaborated with several VA offices to handle the donation, including the Veteran Canteen Services (VCS), Office of Nursing Services, Voluntary Services, and the Office of General Counsel. Together, they coordinated a detailed distribution plan, involving 123 VA medical facilities and their respective Community-Based Outpatient Clinic locations.

JOHN L. MCCLELLAN MEMORIAL VETERANS HOSPITAL. From left to right: Little Rock Canteen Chief-Daniel Eaton, Tonya Filbert, RN, and Eunice Holder, ACC/Retail Little Rock.

“VA healthcare workers have demonstrated true heroism, working tirelessly caring for Veterans and civilians during this COVID-19 pandemic, including traveling to hot spots across the nation. Nike proactively reached out to VA with this generous donation to lend support and share gratitude to those who have dedicated countless hours caring for others,” said Deborah Scher, SCSP’s executive advisor to the Secretary.

According to Amy Kanfer, chief merchandising officer for VCS, Nike also worked with partners Good360 and Webco-Hale to ship the items to VCS locations throughout the nation. “Canteen locations were the most efficient way to make this donation happen,” Kanfer said.

“Nike has always believed in the outstanding values and character found in the military, and we are thankful to all those who serve – and those who serve them. We hope they know how grateful we are for their care of our Veterans,” said BJ Prendergast, Nike’s global category director for Special Field Systems, and brigadier general with the Oregon Army National Guard.

“Frontline healthcare workers are the true heroes of this extraordinary time, and the donation of a shoe designed just for them is our way of showing our gratitude,” he added.

More information on SCSP

VA’s SCSP works with external partners who wish to assist VA with providing quality care for our nation’s Veterans. Donations to help enrich our Veterans and health care workers’ lives during the current COVID pandemic can be sent to the Secretary’s Center for Strategic Partnerships at

Christina Hackerman is a portfolio manager, and Ashleigh Barry is senior advisor in the Secretary’s Center for Strategic Partnerships.

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Published on Jan. 25, 2021

Estimated reading time is 2.1 min.

Views to date: 402


  1. Douglas R. Smith February 16, 2021 at 3:59 pm

    All else aside thank you and Nike. Great job!!!!

  2. Patrick Simon February 15, 2021 at 10:24 pm

    I think it is to be commended. Would love a pair to replace the pair I work in now. Thank you Nike, from a Veteran and Staff Member Nurse.

  3. Janet Allen February 15, 2021 at 7:08 pm

    To the best of my knowledge, the Salem VAMC or any of the CBOC’s got any shoes. We have been there working everyday since this thing started

  4. Anthony Russell February 15, 2021 at 5:30 pm

    Some pretty selfish comments. Thank you frontline staff and all who deal with Covid relief. Thanks Nike

  5. Blake Pascal February 8, 2021 at 6:50 am

    Keep Up The amazing Work!

  6. Shawn E. Pursley February 1, 2021 at 12:16 pm

    I don’t really want shoes from Nike but why don’t nobody ever give gifts to the Veterans? I mean we’re the reason the staff even has a job in the first place. It would be awesome to get something in the mail for free that we don’t have to give back as a loaner! Just saying…

  7. Jack Stevens January 29, 2021 at 1:30 pm

    Nike is a joke. They are just trying to make themselves look better. They have already shown they don’t care about anyone who served in the military.You couldn’t give me a part of their shoes.

  8. Joshua Caporino January 27, 2021 at 10:34 pm

    This is a joke. I was sent to another VA hospital and was told sorry you have a size that’s too big. A 12 for men is average. Thanks for nothing

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