Fifteen Exceptional Employers Recognized for Top Honor
WASHINGTON – The Department of Defense is pleased to announce the 15 recipients of the 2022 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the highest U.S. government honor to employers for support of National Guard and Reserve employees.
The recipients include small and large private and public sector employers nominated by a National Guard or Reserve Component employee employed in their organization. Celebrating its 26th year, the Freedom Award began in 1996 under the auspices of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve to recognize exceptional employer support, with 325 honorees to date.
“I am proud to salute the employers who have distinguished themselves by being named Freedom Award recipients as we mark the 26th year of this highly coveted recognition,” said Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III. “The men and women of the National Guard and Reserve make significant contributions to our communities and our national security through their civilian and military careers. By valuing and supporting their employees’ military service, these employers enhance the strength, readiness, and diversity of our National Guard and Reserve forces, and the readiness of the Total Force. This year also marks the 50th anniversary of the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, recognizing the sacrifices and stalwart dedication of our Reserve Components, their Service members, and the outstanding supportive employers who go above and beyond.”
ESGR received 2,777 nominations for this prestigious award for employers throughout the 50 states, Guam-CNMI, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and District of Columbia. The recipients distinguished themselves by going far beyond the requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, or USERRA, to support their National Guard and Reserve employees. Many offered enhanced pay and benefit packages; flexible scheduling and generous leave policies; and pre- and post- deployment support. In addition, they implemented robust training to equip human resource professionals and managers to support their organization’s military serving employees; stayed connected to deployed employees by sending care packages; and took care of their employees’ families during deployments by assisting with household repairs, including them in company functions, or providing financial assistance.
The 2022 Freedom Award recipients will be recognized in local ceremonies by Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve State Chairs.
The 2022 Recipients are listed by employer name, location and nominator’s service and state:
For more information about the Freedom Award, visit www.FreedomAward.mil. To learn more about ESGR, a program of the Defense Personnel and Family Support Office, visit www.ESGR.mil.
ESGR is a Department of Defense office that develops and promotes supportive work environments for service members in the Reserve Components through outreach, recognition, and educational opportunities that increase awareness of applicable laws. It also provides assistance in resolving conflicts between Service members and their employers.