Politics
2:25 pm
Fri December 13, 2013

Governor Jay Nixon gives "Flag of Freedom" award to IBM

Governor Jay Nixon (D) awards IBM with the "Flag of Freedom" honor for its participation in his "Show-Me Heroes" program.
Credit Jamie Ries / KBIA

Governor Jay Nixon awarded I-B-M with the “Flag of Freedom” award Friday at I-B-M’s IT Services Delivery Center. The award is for I-B-M’s work with the “Show-Me Heroes" program – which encourages Missouri employers to recruit and hire military veterans. 

Nearly 13% of veterans represent Columbia’s I-B-M workforce.  Governor Jay Nixon said the ceremony marks a significant milestone for the program, and they now have almost 3500 businesses. He also said this award is very unique.

“This is an award – plaque – that features an American flag patch, the ones that are worn by the military – not just anywhere though,” Nixon said.  “These are the subdued ones that are worn while in battle.”

IBM Director of the Columbia Delivery Center, Jim Chapdelain, holds the "Flag of Freedom" award as Governor Jay Nixon (D) talks about IBM's participation in his "Show-Me Heroes" program.
Credit Jamie Ries / KBIA

Nixon said in this case, Sergeant Keith D. Miller – who served with the second platoon in Afghanistan – took the flag off and sent it to them for the award.

He also said they have done a couple of things legislatively.

“We passed a training bill a few years ago to help provide resources in training for veterans as they move out of service and move into the area -- where in our 4th year of phasing out, state taxation on veteran’s pensions is also here,” Nixon said.

Nixon said the bottom line is he – and other government bodies – want to attract veterans in the workforce here in the state of Missouri.

But he also said that’s not possible unless they have great leading employers who are willing to engage with the program. 

Media assemble before Governor Jay Nixon (D) awards IBM with the "Flag of Freedom" honor.
Credit Jamie Ries / KBIA