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ESGR in the News


WASHINGTON – Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), a Department of Defense program, announced the 2019 ESGR Volunteers of the Year Award Regional recipients March 17.

ESGR has the unique characteristic for a government organization of relying on nearly 3,700 volunteers across 54 state committees to carry out local engagement with Service members, employers, and to conduct informal mediation between civilian employers and Service members when issues arise related to military service. 

In 2019, ESGR volunteers logged more than 205,000 hours of service, delivering a $5.2 million return on investment to the Department of Defense.  Collectively, ESGR volunteers executed 3,819 events, engaged more than 11,600 employers and briefed more than 305,000 Service members last year.

The following recipients were nominated by their respective state committee Chairs and were selected by Regional Awards Boards comprised of the Chairs within each region.   

These outstanding volunteers went above and beyond in their contributions to ESGR's overall impact....

We congratulate the outstanding volunteers listed below and thank them for their continuous support of Guard and Reserve members.

2019 Employer Outreach Regional Volunteers of the Year:

Susan Robertson - Northeast - Pennsylvania

Angie Gibbs - Southeast - South Carolina

Ray Forgy - Central - Texas

Greg Peck - West - California

2019 Military Outreach Regional Volunteers of the Year:

Daniel Lanier - Northeast - West Virginia

Bernard Gaydos - Southeast - Georgia

Paul Ray - Central - Oklahoma

Janet Cowley - West - Wyoming

2019 Public Affairs Regional Volunteers of the Year:

William Burkhard - Northeast - Pennsylvania

James Billings - Southeast - Alabama

Speedy Castillo - Central - Texas

Susan Schenk - West - Oregon

2019 Ombudsman Regional Volunteers of the Year:

Terry Curran - Northeast - Pennsylvania

Daniel Arp - Southeast - Tennessee

Walter (Terry) McCollom, Jr. - Central - Illinois

Jay Gorman - West - New Mexico

2019 Training Regional Volunteers of the Year:

Paul Desmond - Northeast - Massachusetts

Dr. Norm Naylor - Southeast - Tennessee

Nancy Brown - Central – Missouri

Lynn Albi - West - Colorado

2019 Operations Regional Volunteers of the Year:

George Mentzer - Northeast – Pennsylvania

Jon Woodham - Southeast - Arkansas

George Nami - Central - Texas

Patrick Kuykendall - West – California

The Regional Volunteers of the Year are further evaluated by the appropriate ESGR subcommittee for selection as National Volunteers of the Year in each function/mission category. 

To learn more about ESGR visit

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