Military Friendly Employers: More Than 3,000 Nominated

The silhouettes of Soldiers from the Florida Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 111th Aviation Regiment, stand out against the open hangar door of the Aviation Support Facility, Aug. 29, 2011. Photo by Master Sgt. Thomas Kielbasa.

Each year, the Defense Department asks for nominations of employers who provide “outstanding support” for the National Guardsmen and Reservists who work for them.

The nomination process is 12 weeks long when members of the Guard and Reserve and their families can nominate civilian employers for the Department of Defense recognition known as the Freedom Award.

This year, 3,236 nominations were received for the 2012 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the department’s highest recognition.

The officials from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a DoD agency, will name the award recipients this summer. As many as 15 employers could be recognized nationally at the ESGR ceremony set Sept. 20, 2012 in Washington D.C.

Award winners from 2011 did more than support military employees and their families, according to an ESGR press release, the employers provided help such as driving a deployed employee’s children to school, replacing a deployed employee’s broken refrigerator, and working overtime to cover shifts so a service member employee could take part in military training.

Semifinalists for the 2012 Freedom Award will be announced in April according to the news release.

Military Friendly Employers – ESGR Looking for Nominations

Every year the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) selects the top employers in the nation to receive a “Patriot Award” for hiring military service members, their spouses and for developing  supportive policies for members of the National Guard and Reserves.

Service members can nominate their employer online HERE.

Military spouses can also nominate their employer online HERE.

All that’s needed is to explain why your employer deserves to be recognized at the local, state and possibly national level. The local ESGR committee reviews the explanations when selecting nominees for higher-level awards.

Every employer nominated will receive a Patriot Award certificate and accompanying lapel pin. Some examples of what supportive employers do:

  • Participates in ESGR programs like a Statement of Support signing.
  • Sponsors a company Guard & Reserve recognition day.
  • Features Guardsmen and Reservists on Company bulletin boards, in newsletters or at meetings.
  • Maintains contact with Guard & Reserve employees while they are on annual training or mobilized.
  • Has a published military mobilization policy.
  • Provides pay differential during periods of military training.
  • Provides pay differential during mobilizations.
  • Provides paid military leave.
  • Provides continuation of insurance and monetary benefits during mobilizations.

You can learn more about the ESGR Patriot Awards HERE.


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