On Veterans Day, Prioritize Supporting and Hiring Gold Star Children

By David Kim and Dan Rice, Wednesday, November 10, 2021

In 2008 during the Great Recession, military veterans’ unemployment was a significant national problem and soared to more than twice the national average according to RAND Corporation. Servicemembers departing the military entered a challenging job market with an 8% civilian unemployment rate. Veterans’ unemployment skyrocketed to 29% for 18–24-year-olds according to RAND Corporation. In 2011, under the personal direction of CEO and President Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase & Co. led the corporate effort to solve the problem and started the “100,000 Jobs Mission“ to promote veteran employment, with a goal of hiring 100,000 veterans by 2020. Many companies took up the challenge, creating military networking groups within their organizations and recruiting veterans to lead their recruiting and retention practices.

These deliberate efforts, by over 200 companies, were very successful and veterans’ unemployment has dropped to 3.9% by September 2021, nearly a full percentage point lower than the national average of 4.8%. To date, 686,126 veterans have been hired by the Jobs Mission since 2011. This has had other positive second and third order effects, for veterans, those companies, and our nation. That initiative now has an informal infrastructure across the United States of people who lead their veterans’ initiatives for JP Morgan, Starbucks, Comcast, USAA, and others.

Four years ago, Chief Executive Group and Thayer Leadership started the Patriots in Business Awards to honor the best companies with veteran & military initiatives. Although veteran hiring is vital, training, supporting, and honoring active duty, veterans, and military families is equally important and beneficial to companies as well. This annual award recognizes outstanding companies who are the gold standard for other companies who seek to support those who serve. Read about this year’s winners.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, we lost over 7,000 servicemen and women. Tragically, they left behind an estimated 20,000 children. Families that have lost a servicemember in combat are often referred to as “Gold Star Families.” Those Gold Star children are now growing up. Children of the Fallen Patriots Foundation has already funded college scholarships for over 2,100 of these children. And each year, as they graduate, it would honor the parents who made the ultimate sacrifice, if all the companies that have helped reduce veterans’ unemployment and support veterans and military families, could also prioritize supporting and hiring Gold Star children.

Read the full article here.


Daniel Rice

EXPERIENCE Dan is the President of Thayer Leadership and a 1988 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. In 2010, Dan co-founded Thayer Leadership along with four other West Point graduates with the mission of bringing the world to West Point and bringing West Point leadership to the... Read More +

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