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Veterans Day 2012: Supporting Veteran Franchise-Owned Businesses

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Veterans Day 2012 Marked The One-Year Anniversary of Franchise Industry Campaign; Huge Strides Made to Improve Veteran Employment and Entrepreneurship Opportunities

Unemployment rates for young veterans continue to hover near 20%. However, through the International Franchise Association’s (IFA) initiative Operation Enduring Opportunity, a campaign to hire and recruit 75,000 veterans, their spouses, and 5,000 wounded warriors by 2014, things are looking up.

To honor this initiative and ongoing effort, the IFA and Austin political, business and military veteran leaders are came together on November 12, 2012 at 10 a.m. on the south steps of the Texas State Capitol Building to showcase major progress made in fighting veteran unemployment through franchise ownership and employment opportunities. The devoted group in Austin strengthened the message to support continued advancements for veterans – a call out that will be heard across the country at similar events taking place in select U.S. cities.

A pair of prominent Austin-area political figures, U.S. Rep John “Judge” Carter and State Representative Charles Schwertner, speaking at the event will emphasize the importance of expanded opportunities needed to ensure veterans and their families are able to make productive transitions to civilian life after military duty.
Other Austin area military veterans, statewide military veteran supporters and local business leaders speaking at the event include:
• Pamela Sapia – District Director – U.S. Small Business Administration
• John Spahr – Past State Commander, Texas VFW
• Gordon Logan – Founder and CEO of Sport Clips
• Jeff Connally – President and CEO of CMIT Solutions
• Steve Dixon – Vice President of Franchise Development for Children’s Lighthouse Learning Centers
• Keith Mathias – Director of Strategic Market Development for WIN Home Inspection

On the same day in San Antonio, SBA Administrator Karen Mills addressed a gathering, as will Maj. Cody Roberson (U.S. Army Reserve), currently stationed at Fort Sam Houston and the owner of the new Lenny’s Sub Shop franchise served as the backdrop for the event. Local veteran and wounded warrior SSG Shilo Harris (U.S. Army, Ret.), a new San Antonio-area WIN Home Inspection franchise owner, also spoke alongside other expert speakers on the subject of expanding veteran-owned franchise businesses, including:
• Brent Alvord, President, Lenny’s Sub Shop
• Steve Wadlington, President, WIN Home Inspection
• Mary Kennedy Thompson (USMC, Ret.), President Mr. Rooter, International Franchise Association VetFran Committee Chair
• Mike Rozman, Co-President and Chief Strategy Officer, BoeFly

Click HERE to see photos of both events.

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