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Honolulu Regional Benefit Office

Meet Our Leadership Team


Karen Gooden

Director: Karen Gooden

Karen Gooden was appointed Director of the Honolulu Regional Office in March 2015. As Director, she is responsible for administering a range of VA benefits to more than 129,900 Veterans and their beneficiaries in highly rural and remote locations throughout Hawaii and the South Pacific region, including Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (Saipan, Tinian and Rota). The office provides outreach to the Insular Islands of the Republic of Palau, Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Federated States of Micronesia encompassing a geographic area of 4.6 million miles. Prior to this appointment, Ms. Gooden was the Assistant Director of the Boston VA Regional Office. She also assisted the Director in the management of the Manchester and White River Junction VA Regional Offices. Ms. Gooden is a U. S. Army Veteran.

Nessie Shores

Veterans Service Center Manager: Nessie Shores

Nessie Shores was assigned as the Veterans Service Manager of the Honolulu Regional Office in May 2016. In this position, she is responsible for the day to day oversight of claims processing for disability compensation and ancillary benefits to more than 129,900 Veterans and beneficiaries in highly rural and remote locations throughout Hawaii and the South Pacific region. Prior to this position she was a Coach in the Honolulu Regional office.

Ms. Shores began her VA career in 2004 as a Claims Examiner in the Veterans Health Administration at the Spark Matsunaga Medical Center Fee Based Care where she processed claims for medical care purchased and provided by the Department of Defense.

She then joined the Veterans Benefits Administration’s Compensation and Pension Service in 2007 as a Veterans Service Representative at the Honolulu Regional Office. She assumed roles of more responsibility such as Rating Veteran Service Representative, Acting Coach, Coach, and Acting VSCM. As a Coach, Ms. Shores supervised teams such as Appeals, Quality Review, Special Operations, and Rating.