Sec Def Freedom Award open season still in play

Citizen Airmen still pondering gift ideas for their full-time employers can relax when they capitalize on a bargain, which eliminates shipping costs, and the holiday rat race.

The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award is the top honor given by the U.S. Government, which recognizes employers who provide the most outstanding support for their Guard and Reserve employees, and is presented by the Secretary of Defense.

“The Air Force Reserve has been actively supporting operations around the world for the last 10-plus years,” said Chief Master Sgt. Anthony Mack, 446th Airlift Wing command chief. “When a Reservist leaves her or his civilian profession (to serve in their military career) they rely on their coworkers and employers to ‘fill the gap’ when they’re gone.”

The nomination process is open to all Guard and Reserve personnel, or a family member acting on their behalf.

The only requirements for taking advantage of the opportunity are a computer and Internet connection. No credit cards necessary.

“Reservists truly appreciate the sacrifices (of their employers), which allow them to serve in defending our nation, and the ESGR awards are simple – but heartfelt – ways to officially say ‘thank you’ to our civilian employers,” Mack said.  

The submission deadline is New Year’s Eve 2015.

To nominate your employer for the Freedom Award, fill out and submit the form at

If Dec. 31 feels too close to submit a Freedom Award, the ESGR Patriot Award is a way to identify individual employers and supervisors who support their Reservists and Guardsmen. Find the form at

For more information, visit, or connect with the Washington State ESGR office at, or call 1-800-336-4590, option 6.