Statement issued Monday:
ARLINGTON, VA – Three Indiana employers have been selected as semifinalists for the 2010 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award. The award is the U.S. Government’s highest recognition given to employers for exceptional support of their employees serving in the Guard and Reserve. This year marks the 15th anniversary of the award which was instituted in 1996 under then Secretary of Defense William Perry. Nominations for the 2010 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award were accepted from November 2009 through mid-January 2010.
Of Indiana’s 44 nominations for the Freedom Award, ITT Industries of Fort Wayne, Mid-America Elevator Co., Inc. of Indianapolis and the Indiana Department of Correction of Indianapolis were selected as semifinalists. Examples of semifinalists support for their Guard and Reserve employees include providing the difference between military and civilian salary during deployments, continuation of full benefits, care packages and even family support to employees fulfilling their military obligation.
The three Indiana employers are among 130 semifinalists from across the nation, selected from more than 2,500 nominations submitted by Guard and Reserve members or their families for outstanding employer support.
From this field, a national review board will now select 30 finalists for the award. A national selection board comprised of senior defense officials, business leaders and prior Freedom Award recipients, representing small business, large business and public sector employers, will then select the 15 recipients for the 2010 Freedom Award. The Department of Defense will announce the 2010 finalists in May and the award recipients in early summer. The 2010 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Awards will be presented at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., September 23rd at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center.
About ESGR & the Freedom Award
The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award was instituted in 1996 under the auspices of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR). ESGR is a Department of Defense agency established in 1972 whose mission is to gain and maintain employer support for Guard and Reserve Service by recognizing outstanding support, increasing awareness of the law and resolving conflict through mediation. Since 1996, only 130 companies have been presented with the prestigious Freedom Award. Perpectual Technologies, Inc. is a previous honoree from Indiana. For more information, please visit www.FreedomAward.mil.