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Columbia Regional Benefit Office

Meet Our Leadership Team


Director: Leanne Weldin

Leanne Weldin was appointed Director of the Columbia Regional Office (RO) on July 14, 2013. She administers benefits and services to the Veterans, Servicemembers, their families and survivors in South Carolina. Ms. Weldin served in the Army during Operation Iraqi Freedom.



Charles Kimberger

Assistant Director: Charles Kimberger

Charles Kimberger was appointed to this position in October 2012. Prior to this appointment, he was Assistant Director of VA’s Office of Performance Analysis and Integrity in Washington, D.C. He retired from the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve in July of 2017.  He served as a rifle platoon commander during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2004/2005. 



Portrait of Woody Middleton

Assistant Director: Woody Middleton

Woody Middleton took this position in May 2010. Prior to this appointment, he was Assistant Director of the Pittsburgh RO.



Portrait of Linda Steffensmeier

Veterans Service Center Manager: James R. Ard

James “Ricky” Ard took this position in February 2011. Prior to this appointment, he was Assistant Veterans Service Center Manager and coach. He is a service-disabled Army Gulf War Veteran. Following his retirement from the Army, he pursued an education through VA’s Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment program


Amy L. Hill

Vocation Rehabilitation and Employment Officer: Paul G. Knight

Paul Knight took this position in August 2015. Prior to this appointment, he was the Assistant VRE Officer of the Columbia RO.  He served four years in the United States Air Force and two years in the Air Reserves.  Mr. Knight graduated from the Uniform Code of Military Justice Academy and served as a Legal Specialist and Court Report.