April 1, 2016 - Louisville, KY - Today, in the largest event of its kind, 78 trucking employers gathered to pledge their support to the nation’s members of the Guard and Reserve in a coordinated effort between the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) and FASTPORT.
The transportation industry employs 1 out of 14 working Americans and is an incredible industry for Veterans, transitioning service members, Guardsmen, Reservists, and military spouses. By leveraging the unique opportunity the Mid-America Trucking Show provided to bring so many employers together in one space, this ESGR signing ceremony nearly doubled the ESGR’s previous record of employers signing Statements of Support (the previous being FASTPORT’s event at the Pentagon in December 2015.)
“Trucking industry employers continue to support the joint effort to educate, inspire and hire 150,000 Veterans, Guard, Reserve, Transitioning Service Men and Women, and Military Spouses by publicly showing their support during events like the ESGR Signing Ceremony at MATS and posting their jobs on truckingtrack.org where Citizen-Soldiers can easily access available positions and apply for lasting carers, said Bill McLennan, CEO of FASTPORT. “We are proud to work with ESGR and MATS to create another unique opportunity for employers to stand together as an industry and further demonstrate our collective employment commitment.”
Tom Bullock, ESGR Chief of Employer Outreach added, “This patriotic industry and its employers are setting a high standard for all other industries and employers to follow by providing above-and-beyond support of the nation’s Veterans, many of whom currently serve in the National Guard and Reserve.”
The Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve is an office of the Department of Defense formed in 1972 to bridge the gap between Guardsmen and Reservists and civilian employers. The National Guard and Reserves are fundamental to our nation’s defense, and the health of this foundation depends in part on employers who support enlisted men and women as they fulfill their military duties. The ESGR Statement of Support was formed to bolster the strength and readiness of the the Guard and Reserve by having employers publicly affirm or reaffirm that they will act as advocates for employees participating the the military.
The signing ceremony featured remarks from:
- Mr. Tom Bullock, Chief of Employer Outreach
- Mr. James Ray, FASTPORT Co-Founder
- Mr. Norman Arflack (Brigadier General, Retired), Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs, State of Kentucky
- HON Patrick Murphy, Undersecretary of the Army
- Mr. Allen Youngman (Major General, Retired), Chair of Kentucky ESGR State Committee
During his remarks, HON Patrick Murphy discussed his experience with the trucking industry, both as the son of a professional truck driver and a former member of the industry himself. His first-hand knowledge of the industry showed him that “it has been great for a lot of these heroes as they transition back” but emphasized that employers must take a stand and prioritize their military hiring initiatives:
"Hire these great Americans. Whether they're coming off active duty or whether they're national guard or reserves ... we need you to hire these great Americans. We need to make sure we have these public-private partnerships."
FASTPORT President Brad Bentley agrees. “Public-private partnerships between the military and trucking industry employers are essential. We are showing the military community that we are living up to—and exceeding—the pledges me make to our nation’s current and former service members by signing our Statements of Support. As we continue to do so, our joint effort will ensure the trucking industry remains First Responders in military employment.”
For more information on how to improve your military hiring initiatives or to participate in future industry-specific ESGR Signing Ceremonies, please contact FASTPORT at 978-877-4300.