May 31, 2018 – NextEra Energy (NYSE: NEE) today announced that it has been recognized by the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) for its support of employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserve. This marks the third time in five years that NextEra Energy has been selected for this prestigious award.
The Above and Beyond Award is among the highest honors to be bestowed by the U.S. Department of Defense upon a U.S. employer in recognition of its support of employees who are actively serving in the National Guard and Reserve.
“Having served 27 years in the National Guard myself, I know firsthand how important it is for a Guardsman or Reservist to have the full support of one’s employer, particularly in a post-911 world where frequent worldwide deployments are now the norm,” said Robert L. Gould, vice president and chief communications officer for NextEra Energy, a retired U.S. Air Force colonel and executive sponsor of the company’s employee resource group, VETNEXT. “All of us at NextEra Energy are extremely proud of this recognition. Even more meaningful is the fact that we know we’re making a real difference in the lives of our colleagues who are actively serving in the National Guard and Reserve, as well as their families.”
Matthew Hirsch, a NextEra Energy employee and lieutenant colonel and battalion commander in the Army Reserve, nominated NextEra Energy for the Above and Beyond Award because of the ongoing support the company has provided him and his family while meeting his military commitments.
“NextEra Energy is absolutely deserving of ESGR’s Above and Beyond Award,” Hirsch said. “I’m proud to say that our company lives by the very values this award is intended to recognize. As a battalion commander with responsibility for approximately 1,100 soldiers, my time commitments are greater than most. NextEra Energy is by far the most supportive company I’ve ever worked for where it concerns my military career. Without the company’s support, I wouldn’t be able to invest the time and effort necessary to ensure my personal readiness as well as the readiness of my unit. My family and I will always be thankful to NextEra Energy for the opportunities it has provided me to grow in both my military and civilian careers.”
ESGR is a program of the U.S. Department of Defense that was created to facilitate and promote a cooperative culture of employer support for National Guardsmen and Reserve service members.
“The ESGR Above and Beyond Award was created to publicly recognize U.S. employers providing extraordinary patriotic support and cooperation to their employees who, like the citizen warriors before them, have answered their nation’s call to serve,” said James Dicks, Florida ESGR state chair. “Supportive employers are critical to maintaining the strength and readiness of the nation’s Guard and Reserve units.”
Examples of NextEra Energy going above and beyond in support of those serving in the National Guard and Reserve, as well as all of its military and veteran employees, include:
- In partnership with military organizations, such as the Non Commissioned Officers Association and Professional Diversity Network, the NextEra Energy recruiting team participated in nearly 30 military and veteran career events throughout the U.S. in 2017.
- The Veterans at NextEra Energy (VETNEXT) employee resource group was established in 2012 to encourage networking, support and education for military service members, veterans, and employees who have family members currently serving on active duty and in the Reserve.
- Employees of NextEra Energy participate in the annual Forgotten Soldiers Outreach volunteer project each year to send packages and letters of encouragement to deployed military service members.
- NextEra Energy strives to expand community involvement and networking activities with veterans organizations, establish outreach plans, partnerships and memberships with professional and college organizations that represent and support veterans, and strengthen apprenticeship programs to include veterans.