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KENT, Wash. - Washington Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense program, announced that Blue Origin received the ESGR Above and Beyond Award in recognition of the extraordinary support of its employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserves.

Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith accepted the Above and Beyond Award from the Washington ESGR Committee on behalf of Blue Origin which was presented by Washington State Chair Philip Sanders and ESGR Military Outreach Coordinator Larry Kirchner. 

Blue Origin received the award after being nominated by Lt. Cmdr. Barret Schleglemilch, a Navy Reservist and Senior Program Manager at Blue Origin in appreciation of their support of his military service.

“The ESGR Above and Beyond Award was created to publicly recognize U.S. employers providing extraordinary patriotic support and cooperation to their employees who have answered their nation’s call to serve,” said Sanders. “Many employers provide support far beyond what USERRA requires, including pay differential to offset the loss of wages, and extension of health care benefits to complement coverage provided by the military when their employees mobilized.”

Blue Origin was awarded the Above and Beyond Award for providing its employees pay differential up to 12 weeks per deployment or annual training period, to offset the loss of wages when those employees were called to serve, continued vesting of stock options and 401k match vesting, as well as personal touches like continuing to stay in contact with deployment employees and sending them care packages and checking in with family members. “The leadership and managers understand my military duties and their support makes my life much easier and alleviates many of the stressors of coming and going from civilian to military duty,” said Schleglemilch.  “Blue Origin has been extremely proactive in their support of Guard and Reserve employees from the top down.”

“We are thrilled to be recognized with the ESGR Above and Beyond Award. It’s people like Lt. Cmdr. Barret Schleglemilch and the more than 300 active duty and military veterans who work at Blue Origin that remind us every day of the great talent we have that have served and continue to serve our nation,” said Bob Smith, CEO of Blue Origin. “We are proud to be an employer of choice for the active duty and veterans. We are committed to support them and the broader principles of duty, sacrifice and service that they embody.”

ESGR, a Department of Defense program, 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. For more information about ESGR outreach programs or volunteer opportunities, call (800) 336-4590 or visit http://www.esgr.mil/WA.

Freedom Award nomination season is currently open through December 31, 2021. Learn more about the Freedom Award and how to nominate your employer at https://esgr.mil/Employer-Awards/SecDef-Employer-Support-Freedom-Award

Photo caption: Washington Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense program, announced that Blue Origin received the ESGR Above and Beyond Award in recognition of the extraordinary support of its employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserves. Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith (second from right) accepted the Above and Beyond Award from the Washington ESGR Committee on behalf of Blue Origin which was presented by Washington State Chair Philip Sanders (far left) and ESGR Military Outreach Coordinator Larry Kirchner (far right).  Blue Origin received the award after being nominated by Lt. Cmdr. Barret Schleglemilch (second from left), a Navy Reservist and Senior Program Manager at Blue Origin in appreciation of their support of his military service.

Photo 2: Washington ESGR State Chair Phil Sanders (left) congratulating Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith (right) who accepted the ESGR ABove and Beyond on behalf of Blue Origin in appreciattion of the support Blue Origin provides its employees who serve in the Reserve Component.

Photo 3: Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith was presented with the ESGR ABove and Beyond on behalf of Blue Origiin. Blue Origin received the award after being nominated by Lt. Cmdr. Barret Schleglemilch, a Navy Reservist and Senior Program Manager at Blue Origin in appreciation of their support of his military service.

Posted in: Washington
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