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ESGR in the News


ST. PAUL, Minn. – Minnesota Army National Guard 1st Lt. Thomas Godfrey presented the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) Patriot Award to his supervisor, John Riemer. The award was presented on Jan. 25 in the Second District Public Defender conference room in recognition of John’s unwavering support for Godfrey’s service to the Army National Guard.

In his nomination, Godfrey stated: “John values hiring servicemembers and has never once complained about having to fill my position when attending lengthy military training.” LT Godfrey is a staff attorney in the Public Defender office. He is a JAG Officer with the 34th ID (“Red Bull” Division). Joining the presentation was 1st Lt. Timothy Rank who also serves in the 34th ID and is a staff attorney in the office.

An employee serving in the National Guard or Military Reserve, or the spouse of a National Guard or Military Reserve member, may nominate individual supervisors for the Patriot Award for support provided directly to the nominating Servicemember and his or her family. 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.

Immediately after receiving the Patriot Award, John Riemer signed an Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Statement of Support, confirming that the office joins other employers in pledging:

  • We fully recognize, honor, and comply with the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-Employment Rights Act (USERRA).
  • We will provide our managers and supervisors with the tools they need to effectively manage employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve.
  • We appreciate the values, leadership and unique skills service members bring to the workforce and will encourage opportunities to hire Guardsmen, Reservists and Veterans.
  • We will continually recognize and support our country’s service members and their families, in peace, in crises and in war.

Also, present was John Kingrey, Minnesota Committee member. ESGR is a Department of Defense office that develops and promotes supportive work environments for service members in the National Guard and Reserve through outreach, recognition, and educational opportunities that increase awareness of applicable laws. ESGR also provides assistance in resolving conflicts between Service members and their employers. This year, ESGR celebrates over 51 years of excellence in support of the Reserve Components and their civilian employers.

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

Photo left to right: John Kingrey, 1st Lt. Godfrey, John Riemer, and 1st Lt. Timothy Rank

(Photo courtesy of 2nd District Public Defender office).

Posted in: Minnesota
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