ESGR in the News


Firehawk Helicopters manager honored by Department of Defense for patriotic support

  • Firehawk Helicopters manager honored by Department of Defense for patriotic support

BOISE, Idaho – Idaho Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense office, announced Josh Chandler of Firehawk Helicopters Inc. was honored Feb. 15 with a Patriot Award in recognition of extraordinary support of his employee serving in the Guard and Reserve.

Chandler was nominated for being highly supportive of the National Guard by his Reserve Component employee, Spc. Levi Davis.

“The Patriot Award was created by ESGR to publicly recognize individuals who provide outstanding patriotic support and cooperation to their employees, who, like the citizen warriors before them, have answered their nation’s call to serve,” said Bruce Wright, Idaho ESGR state chair. “Supportive supervisors are critical to maintaining the strength and readiness of the nation’s Guard and Reserve units.”

“Josh has been very supportive of my National Guard career and has made it very easy for me to make it to drills and annual training”, said Davis. “They have been an excellent company to work for, even flying me to other states to make drill and then covering the costs of returning me to my assigned crew. I would recommend Firehawk Helicopters to any National Guard or Reserve member that has a passion for aviation to apply for employment with this company.”

According to its Davis, Firehawk Helicopters supports wild land firefighting operations by providing helicopter water drops across the United States. Because of this, they have a very high operational tempo during the annual peak fire season which runs from June through late October. Firehawk Helicopters Inc. prefers to employ current and prior military members and chooses to hire them over non-military applicants in most cases.

ESGR seeks to foster a culture in which all employers support and value the employment and military service of members of the National Guard and Reserve in the United States. ESGR facilitates and promotes a cooperative culture of employer support for National Guard and Reserve service by developing and advocating mutually beneficial initiatives, recognizing outstanding employer support, increasing awareness of applicable laws and policies, resolving potential conflicts between employers and their service members, and acting as the employers’ principal advocate within Department of Defense. Paramount to ESGR's mission is encouraging employment of Guardsmen and Reservists who bring integrity, global perspective and proven leadership to the civilian workforce.

For more information about ESGR outreach programs or volunteer opportunities, call 1-800-336-4590 or visit

Pictured from left to right: Jim VanDinter, ESGR committee member; Josh Chandler, award recipient; Spc. Levi Davis, award nominator; Ken Baumgartner, ESGR committee member