HARRISBURG, Pa. – Pennsylvania Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), an office of the Department of Defense, announced that Commonwealth Charter Academy (CCA) recently received a Patriot Award, a Seven Seals Award, and an Above and Beyond Award in recognition of extraordinary support of employees serving in the Guard and Reserve.
The Patriot Award reflects the efforts made to support citizen warriors through a wide range of measures including flexible schedules, time off prior to and after deployment, caring for families, and granting leaves of absence if needed.
The Seven Seals Award is the broadest and most inclusive award given by ESGR and is presented at the discretion of the State Chair or by ESGR senior leadership. The Seven Seals Award is presented in recognition of significant individual or organizational achievement, initiative, or support that promotes and supports the ESGR mission, to include the efforts of the more than 3,000 volunteers who carry out ESGR’s mission across the Nation on a daily basis.
The Above and Beyond Award is presented by ESGR State Committees to recognize employers at the local level who have gone above and beyond the legal requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act by providing their Guard and Reserve employees additional, non-mandated benefits such as differential or full pay to offset lost wages, extended health benefits, and other similar benefits. The award is given in limited numbers by State Committees to employers who have had at least one of their supervisors/managers recognized with a Patriot Award, and who have signed or agree to sign an ESGR Statement of Support.
Pennsylvania ESGR is particularly proud to present CCA with the three awards for their strong support of their employees serving in our nation’s Reserve forces during ESGR’s 50th Anniversary year.
CCA’s CEO Longenecker was nominated for the Patriot Award by Capt. Joseph Page for their outstanding support of his service as a member of the Joint Force Headquarters of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard stationed at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania. In nominating Longenecker, Page said: “Longenecker lightened my workload and appointed other colleagues to help when I was away for an extended period of active duty, immediately followed by Annual Training. He actively recruits, and hires, retired Guard service members. He, along with CCA, annually supports the Pennsylvania Guard by contributing to Pennsylvania National Guard Association (PNGAS). CCA hosted a live, “Learn and Work” event for PNGAS and will co-host a virtual career fair with PNGAS in February 2023.”
Presenting the award on behalf of ESGR was Jim Astor, Pennsylvania South Central Area Chair. Astor commented: “It’s critical and an honor to recognize and pay tribute to those employers that hire and support our Guard and Reserve forces. It would be difficult for those in the uniformed services to perform their mission without employer support.” Astor added: “Today’s members of the Guard and Reserves are highly trained and skilled; they bring integrity, a global perspective and, proven leadership to the civilian workforce.” Also participating in the award’s presentation ceremony was CCA Instructor Brig. Gen. Ted Little, U.S. Army (Ret).
ESGR, a Department of Defense office, 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 DoD. 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 ESGR volunteer opportunities, please call 1-800-336-4590 or visit www.ESGR.mil.