Goodyear presented with Secretary of Defense Freedom Award - KSWO, Lawton, OK- Wichita Falls, TX: News, Weather, Sports. ABC, 24/7, Telemundo -

Goodyear presented with Secretary of Defense Freedom Award

Secretary of Defense Ash Carter presenting the Freedom Award trophy to Steve McClellan Secretary of Defense Ash Carter presenting the Freedom Award trophy to Steve McClellan
Steve McClellan, President of the Americas, and Paul Mock, ESGR National Chair Steve McClellan, President of the Americas, and Paul Mock, ESGR National Chair
Steve McClellan with Chris Wozniak, who nominated Goodyear for the ESGR Freedom Award Steve McClellan with Chris Wozniak, who nominated Goodyear for the ESGR Freedom Award
The Goodyear team who attended the awards ceremony (from left to right, Mark Purtilar, Laura Duda, Gary VanderLind, Steve McClellan, Chris Wozniak and a local Akron ESGR representative). The Goodyear team who attended the awards ceremony (from left to right, Mark Purtilar, Laura Duda, Gary VanderLind, Steve McClellan, Chris Wozniak and a local Akron ESGR representative).
The Goodyear team and several ESGR representatives with the Freedom Award trophy. The Goodyear team and several ESGR representatives with the Freedom Award trophy.

AKRON, OH (KSWO) – The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company was formally presented with the 2016 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award on August 26 during a ceremony at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. The Freedom Award, which is the nation's highest honor given to employers for exceptional support of Guard and Reserve employees, was given to 15 companies selected from more than 2,400 nominations.

"These 15 awardees are helping to make the Department of Defense and our country stronger," said Secretary of Defense Ash Carter during the ceremony. "Today, more than ever, the commitment they’ve shown to our country, and to those who serve our country, is indispensable."

Goodyear, the first tire and rubber industry manufacturer to receive this award, was recognized for the honor based on its strong military support including:

The company hired 1,000 Guard, Reserve and veteran employees from 2011-2014 and renewed that commitment in 2015.

Goodyear supports members of the U.S. Armed Forces and families through its annual “Support Our Troops” campaign, which has generated more than $1 million over the past six years.

Goodyear fosters a culture of support for our associate veterans, reservists and guardsmen and women. From its manufacturing plants to corporate offices, Goodyear offers employee benefits, resource groups, and company policies aimed at supporting associates who serve their country while working for the company.

“I nominated Goodyear for the Freedom Award because I’ve experienced firsthand the heartwarming and outstanding support they’re willing to give veterans, guardsman and reservists,” said Chris Wozniak, engineering manager at Goodyear Innovation Center Manufacturing and a Lt. Cmdr. in the U.S. Navy Reservist. “The thread of patriotism runs deep throughout all facets of the organization, whether it’s with new hires, transitioning veterans or even associates who have never served but are passionate about supporting our troops.”

Goodyear has more than 100 years of history building innovative tires and equipment to help support and protect U.S. troops and is the largest producer of military tires in the country.

“To be chosen as one of 15 recipients out of more than 2,400 organizations that were nominated is a great honor,” said Steve McClellan, president of Goodyear Americas. “Although Goodyear is being recognized for our efforts as a company to support our troops and honor veterans, we believe that what we receive back from our veteran associates is truly invaluable. The dedication, work ethic, perspective and ingenuity that they bring to our offices, plants and retail stores every day is the real reward for Goodyear.”

In past years, Goodyear has received the Pro Patria and Above And Beyond Awards, two similarly-judged awards from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, and was recently recognized as a Military Friendly Employer by G.I. Jobs magazine for its leadership in hiring and supporting veterans.

Copyright 2016 KSWO. All rights reserved.

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