Cracker Barrel receives the highest U.S. government honor to employers for support of National Guard and Reserve employees
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store has been selected as a 2019 recipient of the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award. The company is one of 15 employers receiving the award in 2019. This year, more than 2,400 Guard and Reserve service members nominated their employers for the Freedom Award, the highest honor offered by the Department of Defense to employers for their exceptional support of National Guard and Reserve members.
Nominated by a Cracker Barrel employee and guardsman, Cracker Barrel was described as a workplace that values employees in the Guard and Reserve by offering flexible schedules to accommodate military training, supporting families of service members, and leading efforts to boost the morale of employees during their deployments. The nomination also highlighted the work of the “Veterans Employee Resource Group,” an employee group that helps recruit, retain and mentor both newly hired veterans of the U.S. Armed Services and current members of the National Guard and Reserve.
“Cracker Barrel is incredibly proud of this recognition and of our employees who choose to serve our country,” said Cracker Barrel President and Chief Executive Officer Sandra B. Cochran. “As a company, we are continually working to ensure that employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserve, as well as their families, are supported. Our employees create a home-away-from-home for our guests, and supporting these men and women who have chosen to serve their country is an extension of our commitment to connecting families around the table.”
Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) organizes the annual award program, on behalf of the Secretary of Defense, and has presented the award to only 265 employers since the program began in 1996. Employers honored with this distinction range from large and small companies to governmental organizations. The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award will be presented to 2019 honorees during a formal ceremony on August 23, 2019 at the Pentagon.
The “Veterans Employee Resource Group” was also recognized by ESGR last year, when Cracker Barrel was presented with the Seven Seals Award. This is the broadest and most inclusive award given by ESGR, which is presented at the discretion of the State Chair or by ESGR senior leadership in recognition of significant individual or organizational achievement, initiative, or support that promotes and supports the ESGR mission.
Since 1969, Pleasing People has been Cracker Barrel's mission, and the company is Pleased to Serve communities across the country by donating to charities and worthy nonprofits that help provide comfort to those in need. Cracker Barrel’s main philanthropic focus is supporting members of America's armed forces and their families. Cracker Barrel and the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Foundation have long supported military-focused nonprofits and charitable initiatives, including Operation Homefront, Fisher House Foundation, Special Operations Warrior Foundation, and The Legion Fund, among many others. Additionally, Cracker Barrel supports military families through military meal donations for holidays throughout the year, such as Easter and Christmas. By directing most of its giving to this area, Cracker Barrel believes it can make a real, lasting difference in people's lives.
ESGR is a Department of Defense program that develops and promotes supportive work environments for Service members in the Reserve Components through outreach, recognition and educational opportunities that increase awareness of applicable laws. It also provides assistance in resolving conflicts between Service members and their employers. For more information, visit esgr.mil.
About Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc.
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (Nasdaq: CBRL) shares warm welcomes and friendly service while offering guests quality homestyle food and unique shopping – all at a fair price. By creating a world filled with hospitality and charm through an experience that combines dining and shopping, guests are cared for like family. Established in 1969 in Lebanon, Tenn., Cracker Barrel and its affiliates operate 660 company-owned Cracker Barrel Old Country Store® locations in 45 states and own the fast-casual Holler and Dash® restaurants. For more information about the company, visit crackerbarrel.com.