Every Veterans Day, we thank members of the military—past, present, active and reserves—for their service. Their sacrifices. Their heroism. Their hard work and dedication. For protecting our freedom, our lives, our country. We thank their families and loved ones for their sacrifices too.
This year I wanted to also include something more unique to express our gratitude to veterans and current members of the military—something that adds another dimension to, and demonstration of, the valuable impact they make on our company and on all our lives. I say to all these men and women, thank you for the opportunities you bring us every day.
Earlier this summer, American Water earned a Military Friendly® Gold Employer designation from VIQTORY for being an employer that has achieved excellence in corporate programs and initiatives that provide post-military career opportunities. Just last month, our efforts on supporting military spouses were recognized too. Certainly, these are proud moments. But it also got me thinking about how much the opportunity flows both ways at American Water. That is, while we advance initiatives every day to provide our military, reservists, veterans and their families with opportunities for employment and a higher quality of life, this unique and diverse group provides us with just as many opportunities—if not more.
I’m, of course, partial to our Military Services Group, which provides water and wastewater services at 16 military installations in the U.S. By working with us, the teams at these installations give American Water the opportunity to give back to the men and women serving our country and, indirectly, to support the services they provide.
Second, our military veteran employees who continually open doors for American Water to forge new relationships with everyone from state and federal governments to veterans affairs groups to corporate leaders across industries that share our mission to support post-military careers and come together through advocacy programs and partnerships.
Finally, veterans and members of the military provide us an everyday opportunity to do it better. By “it,” I mean Keep Life Flowing. Through their training, work and experiences, military men and women come to us with a unique set of skills, abilities and problem-solving techniques, as well as a strong work ethic and integrity. Whether it’s engineering, IT, operations, security, customer service or team leadership, the veterans and reservists on our team—as well as the many military family members we employ—undoubtedly enrich our workforce; provide a very valuable pool for adding employees; and ultimately allow us to better serve customers, communities and environmental concerns.
I can barely scratch the surface of how and why veterans and members of the military are such an integral part of who we are, what we do and how we’re growing. So I encourage you to please do some more exploring on your own by relistening to episode 3 (A salute to military services) of our Wavelengths podcast series. Also, please read about some of the most recent initiatives and partnerships we’ve brought to fruition to further expand our ability to bring veterans and active reservists onto our team and support them with opportunities best-suited for their military and post-military lives.
Thanks and Semper Fi – Master Sergeant, USMC (retired)