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Title:UPS pledges support of those who serve

Author:Senior Airman Christina Bozeman

Date:February 2013

Source:94th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Volume:Volume 3 Issue 79

2/13/2013 - ATLANTA — Air Force Reserve officers joined with UPS senior executives and other guard and reserve military branches in continuing a 40-year-old Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve mission of gaining and maintaining employer support for guard and reserve members.

"It's great to have UPS recognize our military's dual purpose," said Brig. Gen. Merle Hart, special assistant to the Vice Commander, Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command. "Being a citizen Airmen is a very difficult job. This recognition is duly observed and much appreciated."

Since 1972, the ESGR, a Department of Defense agency, has been advocating relevant reserve employment initiatives; this includes increasing awareness of applicable laws, recognizing outstanding support and resolving conflict between employers and service members.

"The parallel between the military and UPS is that we both have men and women everywhere in uniform," said James Rebholz, ESGR national chairman. "Without the guard and reserves, we could not operate as freely as we do. You've always answered our call, and we appreciate it."

As a veteran, guard or reserve member, finding employment can be challenging. Having companies like UPS maintain its faithfulness to its military members is incredibly important. Veterans currently make up 7.5 percent of UPS's global workforce, and they hired more than 10,400 veterans in 2012.

"This is a special day for UPS because it gives us a chance to say thank you to the more than 23,000 employees who have served, or are now serving in the guard or reserves," said Scott Davis, UPS chairman and chief executive. "Your leadership and selfless service inspire us all."

Among the 23,000 veterans employed by UPS, about 2,200 are currently on leave from UPS and actively serving in military status. The military members know that UPS supports them and that their jobs will be waiting for them when they return, which is one less thing to worry about when deployed.

"UPS has a history of hiring vets," said Col. Steven Clayton, 94th Airlift Wing Operations Group commander, Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Ga. "I worked for UPS from 1979 to 1982, and we had a lot of veterans back then."

UPS also has a long military history itself. One of the founders, George Casey, served in the Navy during WW1 as a Petty Officer Third Class storekeeper, which is today ironically called a Logistics Specialist. There are three prior UPS chief executive officers who were military members as well.

"It should be no surprise that UPS, the global business and shipping logistics leader, has a history rooted in military logistics," said John McDevitt, UPS senior vice president of human resources and labor relations.

UPS has received the ESGR Freedom Award, the nation's highest recognition for employers supporting guard and reserve members, twice; in 1996 in Central Florida, and in 2002 via UPS Airlines.

"UPS participates in programs like these not just out of altruism, but because it makes good business sense," Davis said. "At UPS, we value integrity, good judgment and accountability. These values are also core values in our armed forces."

All military branches were represented at the ceremony. Guests of honor included World War II veteran Lt. Col. "Hap" Chandler, Tuskegee Airman Tech. Sgt. Val Archer and Maj. Gen. Jim Butterworth, adjutant general, Georgia National Guard.

"UPS has a long legacy of supporting military members," Butterworth said. "That's appreciated without a doubt."

Partnered with ESGR, UPS continues to be one of the biggest military supporters to date and, by the looks of today's ceremony, will continue to be a solid partner to veterans and service members everywhere.

"This longstanding relationship with UPS recognizes that the military makes good stable and valuable employees," Clayton said. "This partnership is key for military members returning to their communities, and transitioning back to their regular way of life."

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