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ON THE SHELF USING MILITARY TACTICS AND STRATEGIES TO DRIVE YOUR BUSINESS FORWARD

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usinesses that learn, imitate and adopt military tactics can avoid management problems and improve productivity. Applying standard military techniques to modern business is emerging as a one of the most effective management trends. Kevyn DeMartino, author of the new book Bullet Points, says military tactics and strategies can be easily applied by managers and employees to reduce the time needed to react to new business opportunities and deal with the inevitable problems and challenges that arise. Bullet Points tackles 46 key military tactics and strategies and breaks them down into their component parts so that it is easy for managers and employees to understand them and apply them. You can use tools quickly to pull 8 8

together a strategy and direct the energies of the people from anywhere in an organization or even outside it - to work on a specific task. When problems arise, any trained and equipped individual can identify the additional skills or tactics required, and the responding action can evolve until the project is successfully completed. Businesses that adopt military tactics can avoid managerial over-control in many ways says DeMartino. “The potential prize can be worth tens of thousands, even millions of dollars to companies in profits and avoided costs. Adopting military tactics and discipline produce direct results immediately. Companies can create more collaborative work, more creative ideas, and better use of geographically distributed resources�.

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Here are some examples excerpted from Bullet Points: THE SMELL OF VICTORY “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire” “...Most generals will tell you that there is a certain point in battle where one can sense a subtle turning of the tide. That it’s possible to figuratively “smell victory.” Smell, taste, sight or touch - it doesn’t matter which sense you prefer. In business, you should always look for hints, or indications of success in any corporate effort. These “whiffs,” if you will, can be a tonic to all organizations. Fan their flames and they’ll spread like wildfire throughout the company, enhancing energy, attitudes and your opportunity for long-term success...” BE DECISIVE IN THE FACE OF UNCERTAINTY Make a decision, even if it ultimately turns out to be the wrong one “...All military leadership training imparts (especially in difficult situations) that a leader analyze the information he has at hand and make a decision. The same holds true in business - if faced with even small, seemingly irrelevant decisions, you cannot shut down. If you do, you risk damaging your company and the credibility MEMORIAL DAY 2005

you have earned with your staff...” “BATTLE STATIONS, ALL HANDS ON DECK!” Have everybody prepared to “fight” at a moment’s notice “...Examples can be found in most any company: a store opening that needs a coordinated advertising campaign; a product that inadvertently causes customer injury and creates a firestorm of adverse publicity; your competitor opening a new concept store across the street from yours. Regardless of the event, you can’t have your employees mentally freeze-up when you need them the most. Take a page from the Navy and constantly drill your staff in similar hypothetical situations. When adverse events eventually do occur, they’ll act with calm efficiency as opposed to disorganized chaos... DeMartino goes on to say, “In many businesses, security is also clearly important, and the use of military tactics offers a higher level of protection that other styles of doing business. Corporate adoption of military tactics will be accelerated as companies hire men and women who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan, and it will become more common and more accepted as it is used with increasing frequency and success.”

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ON THE SHELF WAR AND BUSINESS: WHY EXIT PLANNING MATTERS What the war on Iraq teaches all business owners.

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hether you agree or disagree with the war on Iraq, many observers believe that there is currently no clear plan for exiting. This has created turmoil after what was a very successful initial campaign. Whether going to war or starting your own business, having an exit plan is crucial to a successful mission. Both running a business and fighting a war require careful allocation of limited resources and an understanding of what would constitute victory. Unfortunately, most entrepreneurs starting a business are so overwhelmed by all of the things that they need to do in the beginning of their company’s formation that they’re far too busy to worry about the end game, or how and when they’ll eventually get out. As when they’re going to war, they concentrate on the initial campaign and don’t think about what happens if they succeed through the 10

initial starting pains. Pretty soon, years have passed, and they find themselves still working endless hours to make a modest income. It’s hard for them to take vacations, they find themselves constantly fretting about day to day issues and wondering whether working for themselves was such a good idea after all. They are trapped in a quagmire and not sure how to get out. This was not an unusual situation among the dozens of entrepreneurs whom I interviewed for Start it, Sell it & Make a Mint (John Wiley & Sons), and yet there were four practical steps shared on how to create contingency plans when it becomes imperative: 1. Recognize when the situation has fundamentally changed. There is a difference between being at war and being at peace. If you have survived the initial start up battle

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ON THE SHELF (congratulations -- half of all businesses in the US fail in the first two years!) then you need to start thinking about the next stage of the business with a different mindset. One sure way some entrepreneurs knew when their business had “made it” was when they noticed they weren’t as excited going to work as they once used to be. They felt stuck in a rut. That’s the surest sign that something has to be done. Our war in Iraq officially ended when major combat stopped in May of 2003, however a new kind of campaign started afterward. And that requires a different game plan. 2. Make an attitude adjustment. Once you realize that something has to change, then you need to start taking steps to adjust the way you and your business operate, you need to start thinking about the future, and more importantly the end game or exit plan. To continue with the war analogy, the US clearly prepared incredibly well for beating Saddam’s military, and our forces overwhelmed the Iraqi regime, however was the plan as clearly defined for the campaign after the war? With a business, when you have survived the initial start up stage you need to leave crisis mode and start to think about what victory will look like afterwards. Once you have survived and appear to be okay, you need to think about the next stage and operate with a different target. Our goal in Iraq now that Saddam is gone is to establish a democracy. Have you changed your goals for the business now that you have made it through survival? 3. Create a clear plan for your exit. Even though you don’t know how a business might evolve next, knowing what the end result

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looks like will help you to make decisions that get you closer to that end goal. For example, if the exit plan is to sell your business for $5 million dollars, then how much will you need to make in sales and profits in order to be worth that much? Understanding exactly what you need to accomplish in order to reach your goal helps you to decide where to allocate your limited resources. We can all be certain that President Bush and his team are thinking about the milestones that might begin a withdrawal of troops, even though we’re in the midst of a campaign. Similarly, in business, you will need to have a plan even though at times it might look like it won’t work out as you had initially thought. 4. Be adaptable and stay persistent. There is no straight path to victory. Understanding that the best laid plans will need major adjustments is very important. You cannot possibly know what will happen over time, so keep your eye on the end game and be adaptable as to how you get there. Running a business is a constant battle against competitors, against changing times and tastes, and against our own limitations and limited resources. However, unlike a war, if you have a clear plan for victory, there is no one opponent stopping you from attaining those goals. Plan well and execute, and you, too, can be victorious. Joe John Duran CFA is a renowned expert in the field of entrepreneurship.His highly acclaimed book, Start It, Sell It and Make a Mint, 20 WealthCreating Secrets for Business Owners (Wiley and Sons), and website, www.startitsellit.com, provide inspiration and practical tips to help business owners.

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ON THE SHELF THE GIFT OF VALOR Every day ordinary young Americans are fighting and dying in Iraq, with the same bravery, honor, and sense of duty that have distinguished American troops throughout history.

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ne of these is Jason Dunham, a twentytwo-year-old Marine corporal from the one-stoplight town of Scio, New York, whose stunning story reporter Michael M. Phillips discovered while he was embedded with a Marine infantry battalion in the Iraqi desert. Corporal Dunham was on patrol near the Syrian border on April 14, 2004, when a black-clad Iraqi leaped out of a car and grabbed him around his neck. Fighting handto-hand in the dirt, Dunham saw his attacker drop a grenade and made the instantaneous decision to place his own helmet over the explosive in the hope of containing the blast and protecting his men. When the smoke cleared, Dunhams helmet was in shreds, and the corporal lay face down in his own blood. The Marines beside him were seriously wounded. Dunham was subsequently nominated for the Congressional Medal of Honor, the nations highest award for military valor. Phillipss minute-by-minute chronicle of the chaotic fighting that raged throughout the area and culminated in Dunhams injury 12 12

provides a grunts-eye view of war as its being fought todayfear, confusion, bravery, and suffering set against a brotherhood forged in combat. His account of Dunhams eight-day journey home and of his parents heartrending reunion with their son powerfully illustrates the cold brutality of war and the fragile humanity of those who fight it. Dunham leaves an indelible mark upon all who know his story, from the doctors and nurses who treat him, to the readers of the original Wall Street Journal article that told of his singular act of valor. The Gift of Valor Michael Phillips Price: $ 19.95 ISBN: 0-7679-2037-6 AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY: MICHAEL M. PHILLIPS, a staff reporter for the Wall Street Journal, has done four tours in Iraq with the Third Battalion, Seventh Marines. He lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and two children.

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TEXT OF THE ORIGINAL ORDER CREATING DECORATION DAY NOW KNOWN AS MEMORIAL DAY HEADQUARTERS GRAND ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC Washington D.C. May 5, 1868 General Orders No. 11 I. The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or other decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but Posts and comrades will, in their own way, arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.

We are organized, Comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose among other things, “of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion.” What can aid more to assure this result than by cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead? We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic. If other eyes grow dull and other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain in us. Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledge to aid and to assist those whom they have left among us as a sacred charge upon the Nation’s gratitude – the soldier’s and sailor’s widow and orphan. II. It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to call attention to this Order, and lend its friendly aid in bringing it to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith. Department Commanders will use every effort to make this Order effective. By Command of:

N.P. Chipman - Adjutant General John A. Logan - Commander-in-Chief MEMORIAL DAY 2005

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HIGH ON DRY When George DeFazio and his business partner opened their Martinizing Dry Cleaning business in 1996, it had only 1,750 square feet of space. But the store expanded to 4,500 square feet in 2001 and in eight years the 45-year-old DeFazio has become one of the most successful franchisees of Martinizing Dry Cleaning.

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n fact, the success of DeFazio’s store has prompted One Hour Martinizing to concentrate on expanding within the area. Martinizing hopes to have a total of 25 stores by 2008 and is actively recruiting franchisees for exclusive development agreements. “We thought if we did things right, we could do fairly well in the dry cleaning industry,” said DeFazio, who bought his partner out in 1998. With the expansion, DeFazio was able to add more equipment and a tailor’s shop in the front of his Martinizing Dry Cleaning store located on Route 19, three-quarters of a mile north of Donaldson’s Crossroads and four miles south of South Hills Village. 16

DeFazio admits he knew little about the $7 billion dry cleaning industry when he decided to start his business. “The only thing I knew about dry cleaning was that I dropped my clothes off and for all I knew, they took it out back, hit it with a magic wand and it was clean,” he said with a laugh. A good location and attention to customer service are the main reasons DeFazio gives for his success. If there are problems with defective garments, DeFazio assists customers in returning them to the clothing manufacturer for possible replacement. “We really try to do the best we can for our customers,” DeFazio said.

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George DeFazio with daughter Michelle in his Martinizing Dry Cleaning Franchise. DeFazio said the discipline he learned from the military was an asset when he was just getting started.

DeFazio is a 13-year Marine Corps veteran, having retired as a captain in 1993 after working in the areas of artillery and later finance. DeFazio said the discipline he learned from the military was an asset when he was just getting started. “In the beginning, being organized and having a ‘never give up’ attitude really helped,” DeFazio said. “I learned there is always a way to get things done.” Franchising holds appeal for many veterans, so much so that the International Franchise Association sponsors a program called VetFran, which offers discounts or incentives to veterans buying franchises. When DeFazio opened his Martinizing Dry Cleaning store eight years ago there were eight other dry cleaning businesses located within MEMORIAL DAY 2005

one mile in either direction from his store on Route 19. Today, there are still seven, yet DeFazio does little marketing outside of ValPak mailings and some other minimal promotions. “I concern myself with my business and that’s it,” DeFazio said. “I don’t do nearly as much marketing as my counterparts.” But 75 percent of Martinizing’s customers are part of its VIP program, which for a one-time $15 fee entitles them to 10 percent of all orders and after-hours garment drop-off. Much like the millions of pounds of clothes that tumble annually through its machines across the world, Martinizing Dry Cleaning is putting a new spin and direction on a name that has been synonymous with the industry since 1949.

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Martinizing Dry Cleaning is the most recognized name in dry cleaning and the largest dry cleaning franchisor in the United States with 619 locations worldwide. But 80 percent of its current franchisees signed on before 1987, when Martinizing Dry Cleaning introduced a new franchise agreement offering improved support that was more reflective of a full-format franchisor.

more popular in the franchising industry. The company began ramping up for the push two years ago when it made staff changes, realigned its marketing and real estate departments, and improved marketing and operational support for franchisees.

Now, the concept named after Buffalo, New York chemist Henry Martin, who pioneered onsite dry cleaning, is looking to increase its industry dominance, harkening back to its heyday of the 1960s when thousands of Martinizing Dry Cleaning stores dotted the U.S. landscape.

“We’ve always been the largest franchised dry cleaner as far as units go, but that has never been Martinizing’s goal. Our goal has been to be the best!” said Frank Knowles, director of franchise development, who joined the company two years ago as part of the new growth movement. “They always tried to grow one unit at a time. Our new approach will target great business people who can grow in multi-units.”

The Cincinnati, Ohio-based franchisor intends to accomplish the task by attracting multi-unit investors, a growth vehicle that has never been

How times have changed. Although it already has a strong presence in different regions of the country, five core areas have been selected to

“We’ve always been the largest franchised dry cleaner as far as units go, but that has never been Martinizing’s goal. Our goal has been to be the best!” said Frank Knowles, director of franchise development.

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According to the International Fabricare Institute there are approximately 30,000 dry-cleaning businesses in the United States, “but the good news for us,” Laesser said, “is that there are not a whole lot of high quality dry cleaners.”

be the foundation of Martinizing Dry Cleaning’s new growth. Orlando, Pittsburgh, Phoenix, Nashville, and Cincinnati represent areas that already support successful stores, have a multiunit operator in place or show potential for strong growth. Exclusive multi-unit development agreements have already been reached for Orlando (10 stores), Tampa (10), Des Moines, Iowa (5) and Mesa, Ariz. (3). “Our focus will be on identifying potential multi-unit operators who qualify for 5-, 10-, and 15-unit exclusive development areas within these markets,” said Jerry Laesser, vice president of marketing and franchise development. “Yes, we will continue to grant single-unit franchises as we have for more than MEMORIAL DAY 2005

50 years; however, our impetus will be on multiunit exclusive developments. Our plans call for 100-plus store growth in the next three to four years under this strategy.” Martinizing Dry Cleaning markets itself as a premium provider to an upscale customer base (median household income of $60,000-plus), without premium pricing. According to the International Fabricare Institute there are approximately 30,000 dry-cleaning businesses in the United States, “but the good news for us,” Laesser said, “is that there are not a whole lot of high quality dry cleaners.” Competition primarily comes from established regional chains of quality cleaners. The socalled “dollar cleaners” and stereotypical momand-pop stores aren’t seen as threats since they

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Almost 30 percent of the company’s U.S. franchisees own more than one store and that same group accounts for almost 70 percent of the chain’s 405 stores in the United States. But the multi-unit operator that Martinizing Dry Cleaning is going after now is far different from the investor that helped the company grow one store at a time.

appeal to a different clientele. More recent players such as Zoots, founded in 1998 by Tom Stemberg and Todd Krasnow, creators of Staples office supply stores; and Hangers, which uses a liquid carbon dioxide system to clean garments, also are not seen as threats. “You always have folks coming into the market who think they have a better mousetrap,” said Laesser. “People think they have the next McDonald’s and they don’t.” There is already a strong base of multi-store operators within the Martinizing Dry Cleaning system, but many of those are “grandfathers,” those who joined the system before 1987 when the new franchising agreement was introduced. They don’t pay the standard four percent royalty fee. Instead, they pay a set yearly fee adjusted annually based on the Consumer Price Index. Almost 30 percent of the company’s U.S. franchisees own more than one store and that same group accounts for almost 70 percent of the chain’s 405 stores in the United States. But the multi-unit operator that Martinizing Dry Cleaning is going after now is far different from the investor that helped the company grow one store at a time.

Knowles, the director of franchise development, has first-hand experience of how franchising has changed. In the 1960s he spent time as a missionary in Africa and was an assistant chaplain at the Utah State Prison, where he counseled some of America’s most notorious criminals, among them Ted Bundy. Knowles has been in franchise development for 34 years, getting his start with the Spudnuts doughnut chain. “In the earlier days, a good candidate for us was a blue-collar worker who had $50,000, was tired of doing whatever he did and wanted to buy a franchise for he and his wife to run,” Knowles said. “But now, with the way Martinizing Dry Cleaning has fine-tuned everything, we’re almost offering investors a ground-floor opportunity with a company that has been established for 50 years.” Multi-unit investors with Martinizing Dry Cleaning must have a net worth of $500,000 and many will likely be refugees from corporate America, where they have gained strong management and marketing skills but have become disillusioned with their careers. “They’re tired of it,” Knowles said. “They’re leaving with substantial amounts of money and looking for something better, and something for themselves.”


Underscoring Martinizing’s Dry Cleaning’s dedicated growth strategy is its use of Claritas, the largest demographic research company in the country, to identify prime demographics for store locations. Eddie Bauer, BMW of North America and the Los Angeles Times are among Claritas clients. “Multi-unit development is the kind of kick in the pants you need for a franchise system like ours that has some real positives going for it,” Laesser said. “We have really re-invented ourselves and we’re a much more dynamic company than we were even two years ago.”

To learn more about franchise opportunities with Martinizing Dry Cleaning, contact them at the following address or phone numbers or visit them online. Martinizing Dry Cleaning Martin Franchises, Inc. 422 Wards Corner Rd. Loveland, OH 45140-6950 513-351-6211 800-827-0207 www.martinizing.com

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FINANCIAL INCENTIVES AVAILABLE TO VETERANS PURCHASING A FRANCHISE

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eterans have learned well the lessons of taking responsibility for your actions, being accountable and owning your present situation. For these reasons, Action International, the world’s #1 business coaching team, feels Veterans make incredible franchisees. “Veterans are excellent candidates for franchise opportunities,” says Action’s US Sales Manager Richard Bernstein, “because their military training ensures they have the discipline to follow a proven formula for performance, willingness to work hard to reach goals, and strong belief in core values, all of which are assets necessary to run a successful franchise business.” As such, Action International is proud to be a part of a special program through the International Franchise Association (IFA) that offers Veterans financial incentives for purchasing a franchise. The Veterans Transition Franchise Initiative, known as VetFran, was re-initiated following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Currently 123 veterans have acquired franchises and more than 80 are in various stages of negotiation. Nearly 150 franchise systems that are members of IFA participate in the program, which offers veterans a “best deal” through discounts or other incentives that are determined by each company. VetFran is supported by the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Veterans Corporation. IFA represents franchisees, franchisors and suppliers who conduct business across a broad spectrum that encompasses 75 different industries operating in more than 100 countries.

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“VetFran is the franchising community’s way of saying ‘thank you’ to veterans who have placed their lives on the line to protect America’s freedom,” said The Dwyer Group Pres. and CEO Dina Dwyer-Owens, who chairs the program which was initiated by her late father, Donald Dwyer, during the Gulf War. Veterans interested in the VetFran program should visit the IFA website http:// www.franchise.org, which has hotlinks to all of the companies participating in VetFran. Action International is a business coaching and training company that works with small to medium sized business educating the business owner how to improve the sales and marketing in their business. For more information on opportunities with Action International, visit them online at www.action-international.com, or call toll-free 1 (888) 483-2828. Action International, headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, is one of the fastest growing franchises (#16 Entrepreneur Magazine, Feb. 2004) and is the largest business coaching company in the world. The company was established in 1993 in Australia by a young visionary named Brad Sugars. Brad recognized early on that most owners of smalland medium-sized businesses were unaware of how to effectively grow their businesses and achieve their goals. He developed a comprehensive system and methodology to assist business owners in achieving their goals and realizing their dreams with dramatic results. The company began franchising in 1997, and now has 550+ franchisees working in 18 countries around the globe.

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MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONY HONORS MILITARY HEROES US Army Military District of Washington Public Affairs ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETRY

A patriotic ceremony honoring the service and sacrifice of America’s military members is scheduled for May 30 at 11 a.m. in Arlington National Cemetery. This year’s event, which marks the 137th observance of Memorial Day on these hallowed grounds, will be hosted by Maj. Gen. Galen B. Jackman, commanding general of the U.S. Army Military District of Washington and Joint Force Headquarters – National Capital Region. A wreath-laying ceremony will take place at the Tomb of the Unknowns, followed by a remembrance ceremony in the Memorial Amphitheater. The event will commence with a prelude concert by the U.S. Air Force Band at 10:20 a.m. inside the amphitheater. Both ceremonies are free and open to the military community and general public. No tickets are needed to attend this event. For people interested in observing the wreath ceremony, space is limited to standing room only. Inside the amphitheater, seating is also only available on a first-come, first-served basis. The amphitheater can accommodate 5,500 people, but attendees are encouraged to arrive early to ensure access to the event. At 8 a.m., the cemetery gates open and a free shuttle service will begin transporting people from the visitors’ center to the amphitheater. Attendees will be admitted into the ceremony site at about 8:30 a.m. People driving to the cemetery may park their 24

vehicles for free in the visitors’ center parking garage until 1 p.m. In addition, Metrorail will be operating all day, so attendees may ride the “blue line” to the subway station located just outside the cemetery’s main entrance. Meanwhile, DoD identification card holders may park at Fort Myer, then either ride a free shuttle from the Memorial Chapel or walk through the Old Post Chapel Gate to the event. Be advised that pedestrian traffic will be limited to the following routes in the cemetery: From the ANC Visitors’ Center – Turn left onto Eisenhower Drive and proceed south. Turn right onto Porter Drive and walk up the hill. Turn right onto Memorial Drive, then move to the security checkpoints. From Fort Myer’s Old Post Chapel Gate – Travel east on Meigs Drive, then turn left onto McPherson Drive. Stay left at the fork in the road and continue south. Turn left onto Porter Drive and walk down the hill. Make a left onto Memorial Drive and enter at the security checkpoints. Heightened security measures will require attendees to pass through a checkpoint to gain access to the ceremony site. Purses should be limited to essential items and will be subject to security inspections. Potential weapons will be confiscated. Furthermore, large backpacks, camera bags, coolers, picnic baskets and insulated beverage containers will not be allowed on the premises. For details, call the Public Affairs Office for the U.S. Army Military District of Washington at 202-685-4645 / 3041.

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The Veterans Corporation Offers Entrepreneur Training Programs and Business Resource Centers to Veterans Interested in Starting or Expanding Small Business Ventures By Richard Chudy

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ccording to the Census Bureau and the Small Business Administration (SBA), there are between 4.2 and 5.5 million veteran-owned businesses currently operating in the United States. With the total number of U.S. small businesses estimated to be 22.6 million at the end of 2001, veteran-owned businesses account for up to 24.3 percent of the total. Considering that there are a total of 25.6 million veterans in the U.S., nearly 21 percent of veterans have made the decision to be their own boss and start their own businesses. While the statistics are eye opening, it is no surprise when you consider that ex-military personnel possess many of the skills and characteristics required to become successful entrepreneurs. The bottom line - veterans are a vital component in the success of our economy. The job at hand - provide veterans with the education, training and resources necessary to build a successful business. Veteran business owners are receiving greater attention and exposure as evidenced by the enactment of the Veterans Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development Act of 1999. The legislation created the National Veterans Business Development Corporation (most commonly known as The Veterans Corporation). The Veterans Corporation is tasked with providing veterans and service-disabled veterans with access to capital, entrepreneurial education, an electronic marketplace, business networking and other services. The corporation serves all veterans of U.S. Armed Forces as well as active-duty military personnel and reservists seeking to become small business owners. Veterans who are interested in pursuing small business development and ownership have the opportunity to take advantage of the The Veterans Corporation (TVC) FastTrac entrepreneurship-training program. TVC partnered with the Kaufman Foundation in MEMORIAL DAY 2005

developing the FastTrac program. Two courses form the core of TVC’s Veteran Entrepreneurial Training Program (VET) - FastTrac NewVenture and FastTrac Planning. The programs are designed to better prepare American veterans for success as small business owners or to assist existing veteran business owners increase profitability. In 2001, 1,100 veterans completed the training program. In 2005, the goal is to train at least 10,000 veterans. In addition to the FastTrac NewVenture and FastTrac Planning programs, plans are in place to develop six to ten additional FastTrac courses dealing with taxes, human resources and regulatory topics. Originally launched in Colorado in 2004, the FastTrac/VET program is gradually working its way west. The NewVenture program is designed to aid veterans who have an idea for a new business determine whether or not there is a viable commercial potential with participants completing a feasibility study. Students conduct an in-depth analysis that includes financing, budgeting, pricing and marketing. The Planning program is designed for current business owners who wish to take their business to the next level. Once the eleven-week course is completed, participants will come away with a clear and concise business plan that encompasses growth strategies, cash-flow management and tactics to gain a greater share of the market. President and CEO Walt Blackwell of Bethesda, Maryland heads The Veterans Corporation. Blackwell brings over 30 years of global management and communications experience to TVC. During his 25 years with IBM, he worked in product development, internal communications, and employee recognition and developed a non-profit organization to promote technology education in local schools.

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One of Blackwell’s responsibilities will be to oversee the development of Veteran Business Resource Centers (VBRC’s) across the nation. The first VBRC was opened in St. Louis and has proven to be a much needed and successful venture. The St. Louis VBRC serves as one of several potential models for individually tailored, community-based service centers that will serve veterans of all types with a focus on entrepreneurship, market promotion and community development and leadership. VTC has begun the process of developing VBRC’s in other cities including Austin, Atlanta, Boston, Denver, Philadelphia and San Diego. The pilot program in St Louis will most likely serve as a model for development of the new centers. The St. Louis model was built on the six

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activities or pillars of TVC. Access and Assessment - VBRCs will serve as “concierge” for the local Veteran community, providing access to ideas and services, and conducting ongoing assessments that will identify gaps in local business services, and designing a local program that provides specific access to education, tools, technology, capital, services, mentorship, networking and markets. Business Incubators - All of the providers and participants of current TVC programs across the nation think that business incubators are a significant element of the success of new entrepreneurs. Most of them have so little infrastructure that access to a copy machine and a computer loom as large obstacles to success.

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Incubator space for a wide range of types of business starts will be an important base for economic development. Community Leadership/Advocacy - VBRCs will serve to galvanize community leadership with new energy and ideas from Veteran leaders who will work together to transform community economic development into an engine for enterprise and local prosperity. Entrepreneurship Training/Counseling - VBRCs and affiliated groups will conduct entrepreneurship seminars and work with elearning programs, business plan development, product development, marketing that includes e-commerce, public and private procurement, legal assistance, accounting, insurance, licensing

and certification, and technologies. Networking - VBRCs will form a national network that provides a constant flow of new ideas and best practices into community development efforts. These networks will include a wide range of business leaders and affinity groups as well as core Veteran organizations. Mentoring - Leaders from business communities will do one-on-one mentoring as an integral part of the activities of the VBRC. This will add an important element to the spirit and spread of the entrepreneurial movement. It is equally important to support peer mentoring, as the best network (as attested to by current clients of the VBRC) is often one another and in the

Military training provides many useful skills in preparation for business ownership including leadership skills, organization, decision making and many others. Coupling these skills with real-world business education and training can make the difference in whether or not a business idea can become a viable entity.

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“The St. Louis VBRC was my champion for change when I needed one. This group can go places effectively that the rest cannot.” Lawrence F. Kuberski, President of Gateway Tool and Cutter Grinding Services, St. Louis

case of veterans, is essential to success. While these pillars address the needs of the community, veterans who have have used the resources of TVC are the best indicators of just how effective the programs and centers are in the real world. From Lawrence F. Kuberski, President of Gateway Tool and Cutter Grinding Services, St. Louis “The St. Louis VBRC was my champion for change when I needed one. This group can go places effectively that the rest cannot. I visited the VBRC in 2004 and met Patrick Heavey and Roger Horn. These two gentlemen took the time to hear my story and make themselves available to discuss opinions that I might have as both a veteran and as service-disabled veteran. “Patrick Heavey, who is the director of this center, has worked with me on several occasions providing insight and guidance. I would highly recommend both these gentlemen because they conduct themselves in a professional manner and because they take the time to understand individual situations. The guidance I have received thus for has been invaluable.” From Charles MacMullen, MacMar Communications “The course provided was very valuable in 30

helping my business partner and me as we researched the market we were addressing for MacMar. We were able to network with several other entrepreneurs attending the course, hear their ideas and not only gain their perspectives on starting a small business in general and but also their perspective on how my partner and I were structuring MacMar. It also helped us run the numbers and determine if it made sense financially to start MacMar Communications and what fee structure we needed to adopt in order to be financially successful. From this foundation we have built MacMar, and to date it has been a successful venture. Additionally, since taking the course, we have been invited to several networking events, some specifically for veterans and some with other small/medium size businesses. Subsequently we have identified new business from a couple of these contacts - which is a huge benefit of working with the VBRC.” From Rod Davis, who operates a business installing and maintaining fire alarms and suppression devices “The VNRC has been invaluable in assisting with identifying all manner of opportunities for our company to grow. The center personnel are extremely efficient and knowledgeable about doing work with the federal government. Mr. Heavey and Mr. Horn go above and beyond in order to help our company become a successful one. We look forward to more centers being

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opened to allow other veterans the access to the great resources the VBRC provides.” From Ed Harrington, The Task Force Inc: “I was drawn to the VBRC because I had been told it provided the most comprehensive assistance available to Veterans to learn how to start my own business. I was seeking information and insights from experienced leaders and managers and I wanted to use my time effectively to determine the right course of action to take. I found the VBRC extremely helpful and always willing to find the right resources for me to set up our business. They referred me to Mr. Louis Celli, Jr. who is the President of Leader’s Advantage, Inc.; a firm dedicated to helping veteran’s establish their own businesses.” “Mr. Celli provided us an in-depth level of experience and expertise in getting our business started. He helped us enroll in a course for entrepreneurs that he developed and implemented. His instruction was precise and targeted to the necessary actions required for business start-up and for long-term success. He brought in seasoned business leaders, financial/ banking, legal and marketing experts to give us key pointers to use so we could preclude making mistakes as we started. Mr. Celli has lived up to his pledge of continuing assistance, he has met with us and helped clear the way for financing and expansion of our services. As a result of Mr. Celli’s efforts we have our first contract and will have two more contracts in place by the end of May.” To learn more about TVC and the programs available, visit them online at www.veteranscorp.org, email them at info@veteranscorp.org or call them at 1-866-2VETCORP.

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WINNING Eight Steps to Creating Your Personal Brand by Chaz Austin

The job market is undergoing a profound and longlasting transformation. The days when someone could work for one company during his or her entire career and retire with a pension are long gone. Because corporate loyalty no longer exists, we have essentially become a nation of freelancers. Computers are making us more efficient, but fewer of us are needed to do the work, and outsourcing is reducing the number of jobs available. We are being laid off and downsized, but not necessarily re-hired as the economy improves. Even those of us who are employed are frightened. This instability means that to stand out from the competition, we need to be constantly marketing ourselves in increasingly creative ways. The techniques we’ve always relied are no longer sufficient. Like an actor, looking for work is becoming a constant series of 34

in the JOB MARKET

auditions. This article provides a roadmap for how to find work in a world where the rules have changed. By using the same strategies that have been used successfully for decades by the best-selling brands (Coca-Cola, Microsoft, Kodak, etc.), you will begin to learn how to brand, market and promote “you.” And these techniques will work whether you are looking for a job, seeking freelance work, or creating new revenuegenerating opportunities for yourself. 1. Discover What You’re Good At What do you love doing? What gets you into the “zone,” so immersed in your work that you look up and it’s three hours later and you wonder where the time has gone? What do you enjoy so much that you’d do it for free, and so well that people will pay you a lot of money for it? 2. Identify Your Marketable Skills What skills have you developed in your education and career that you can monetize? What - and how

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many - transferable skills do you have? For example, if you led outings for your church group, that says that you are a leader, good at handling details, and can manage diverse personalities in a variety of circumstances - all qualities that make for a good manager. 3. Match Your Skills to the Marketplace Once you know what you enjoy and have identified your marketable skills, it’s time to see if - and how - you can combine the two. The question “What do you want to do when you grow up?” should be, “What do you enjoy doing that people will pay for?” Learn to distinguish what you enjoy and are good at, from what you enjoy, are good at - and can sell. 4. Define Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) Many people can do what you do, but no one has your unique combination of skills. How do you define them in a Sound Bite (also known as an Elevator Pitch), so that in ten or fifteen seconds, people will know exactly what it is you offer? In a world where business people are constantly bombarded with information from phones, the web, email, faxes, etc., ten or fifteen seconds (about the average elevator ride) is all the time MEMORIAL DAY 2005

you have to get them interested in you. Define and refine your pitch so the people you meet will want to know you better. 5. Develop Your Branding Message and “Story” People tend to hire people they know and with whom they are comfortable. The more engaging you can make the stories you tell about your history, the more people will enjoy talking to you, the more time they will spend with you, and the greater the chances of deepening your relationship. Learn to tell interesting stories about yourself and how you got to where you are. This is not the time to be modest and shy. 6. Make Your Resume Your Personal Branding Statement Your resume is not a histor y of your work experiences or a confessional where you account for everything you’ve ever done. It’s where you list your specific accomplishments, including marquee names with whom you’ve been associated, and quantifiable results (numbers). Your next employer is interested in your demonstrated history of success and how that will apply to making money for him or her. Everything else you’ve done is irrelevant. Like makeup on a woman, your

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resume needs to accentuate your best features while hiding your flaws. Your resume is the script for telling your professional life story. 7. Network Effectively 80% of all jobs are filled before they’re even advertised. In the new world of work, networking is where it all happens. Discover how to gain access to the people who are in a position to either hire or refer you. Whenever you look for work, you’re answering three questions: who’s my market (audience)?, how do I find them?, and what do I say to them so they buy what I’m selling? (my skills and services). Finding a job is the same process as getting a date. You need to develop a sense of relatedness, mutual interest, trust, and opportunity before you get the job offer (or the date). 8. Interview So They Remember You If you’ve networked well, you already know the people in the company in which you want to work. They know you and want you to join their team. When it’s time for the formal interviews, expect to be asked questions like, “Describe your greatest weakness in the workplace.” Prepare answers that will show you in the

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best possible light (in this case it might be something like, “I tend to work too hard, but I’ve learned through experience that to maximize my efficiency, I need to stop working after 12 or 14 hours, get some rest and come back refreshed the next day.”). Discover what you love that’s marketable, and then match those skills to what the market is buying. Once you’ve done that, define your USP, branding message and story. Then create a resume that’s your branding statement, so you can network effectively and participate in memorable interviews. These eight steps are the tools you need to build a great career. Writer Biography A recognized specialist in Career Branding and Marketing, Chaz Austin consults to a wide range of business professionals, and teaches Career Planning, Marketing, and networking skills at colleges in southern California, including UCLA, Loyola Marymount University, and the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. He has spoken about branding and promotion to the American Society for Training and Development, International Society For Performance Improvement, Swedish Trade Council’s Global Executive MBA Program, Network of Indian American Professionals, and the Korean Institute for Public Administration, among others. He holds an M.A. in Broadcast Communication Arts from San Francisco State University.

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MIAMI DADE COLLEGE STEPS-UP SUPPORT FOR EMPLOYEES ON MILITARY LEAVE

“This is a way of giving back to the dedicated folks who are giving so much to our country,” said MDC president Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón. “It’s because of them that we can continue to live under the liberty which we so treasure. We are so proud of their efforts and courage.”

New plan calls for “gap pay” and a support network for families of personnel on military duty

The new plan also includes other enhancements such as allowing employees to combine their statemandated, 30-day paid military deployment leave with the 17-day paid leave the College allows for military training. MDC is also stepping-up outreach efforts to the families of employees on military duty. College officials are committed to contacting employee family members at least once every 45 or 60 days, to ensure that they are being properly cared for and are having their immediate needs met.

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n times of war, military reservists often sacrifice their earning potential for the honor to serve their country. In many cases, this means that whole families see their income drastically reduced, at a time when they are also trying to cope with the added burden and stress of having a family member away from home, in the line of fire. Starting on Monday, January 3rd, those reservists on military leave for long-term deployment from full-time positions at Miami Dade College (MDC) no longer need worry about their families having to make ends meet on reduced pay while they are off fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan, or other hazardous posts. In a move that coincides with the general goodwill of the holiday season, Miami Dade College’s District Board of Trustees approved a measure that will complement the roster of benefits already offered to faculty and staff members on military leave. The approved plan, presented by Miami Dade College vice provost Jesse Alvarez at the latest Board of Trustees Meeting, calls for the College to provide “gap pay” to personnel on military leave. “Gap pay” refers to complementary pay that reimburses employees the variance between lost civilian wages, and their military deployment pay. For example, once the new plan goes into effect, an employee paid $1,000 at the College who is paid only $800 on military duty would receive $200 from the College to make up the difference. MEMORIAL DAY 2005

The enhanced benefits and “gap pay” plan was crafted in part with feedback from MDC employees who are active in the military. “It’s the right thing to do; it’s the patriotic thing to do,” Alvarez said. “The college is making a statement that we support our employees in the armed forces. So, when an employee goes out and does their military duty, they are doing it with the added security of knowing that the college is supporting them and their families.” Faculty and staff were not the only beneficiaries of the enhanced benefit plan; the Board of Trustees also approved a number of special considerations for students who are called to duty. MDC will mail letters of support to all students who are deployed, and will grant them preferred status upon their return, once they are ready to register for classes. Miami Dade College has approximately 15 employees active in the reserves or in the National Guard. During the last two years, eight employees have made use of the temporary duty, or training leave option. More recently, four employees used long-term leaves of over 90 days for military deployment. At least two others are already scheduled for deployment leaves of 90 days or more.Media Relations Department are available

on the web at www.mdc.edu.

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EXPANDED OPPORTUNITIES FOR SERVICE-DISABLED VETERANS TO GAIN ACCESS TO $260 MILLION IN GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS

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he announcement comes on the heels of a federal acquisition rule allowing agencies to provide sole-source and set-aside contracts to service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses. Federal contracting officers welcome the rule as an additional means to helps agencies devote three percent of their spending to service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses, a goal set by Congress and supported by President Bush. “This effort reflects President Bush’s commitment to the men and women veterans of the U.S. military, who have given so much to protect and defend freedom and democracy for our great country,” said GSA Administrator, Stephen A. Perry. “As a major federal acquisition agency, GSA is leading the effort to expand opportunities for service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses to compete for contracts with federal government agencies. GSA’s Region Six Administrator, Bradley Scott of Kansas City, Mo., presented the initiative to veterans and agencies on May 27 at GSA National Capital Region (NCR) all-day event, Opening Doors for America’s Heroes: Growing Success Through Government Contracting, hosted by NCR Administrator Donald C. Williams at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center.

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“Our service-disabled men and women have developed great strengths that, when applied to business, can greatly benefit the civilian community,” said Scott, who has spearheaded GSA’s service-disabled, veteran-owned small business initiative. GSA has developed partnerships with the Small Business Administration, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Defense and the Defense Logistics Agency. For information, please visit: GSA's Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Web Page. GSA was created by Congress to help agencies improve efficiency and better serve the public. On behalf of federal agencies, GSA acquires office space, equipment, telecommunications, information technology, supplies and services, and provides policy solutions for more than one million federal workers in more than 8,000 buildings in 2,000 U.S. communities. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT THE GSA AT: 1800 F STREET, NW WASHINGTON DC 20405 WWW.GSA.GOV

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Senate Passes Landrieu-Kerry Reserve Fund For Reservists and Small Businesses The Landrieu-Kerry Amendment carves a $1.2 billion fund for reservists and small business owners out of the $70 billion tax cut in the president's budget. The amendment will help employers of Guard and Reservists make up the difference between their military and civilian pay. Small businesses will be eligible for an additional tax credit for wages they pay to temporary workers hired to fill in for Guard or Reservists, so they can have their jobs back when they return home. “The American people will choose tax relief for reservists over tax giveaways for millionaires any day. I am glad Congress rejected short-sighted budget priorities and instead decided to stand up for our nation's military families. Mary Landrieu and I have fought a long time to make this tax relief a reality, and at last in a time of war Washington has responded to the economic struggles of so many reservists serving our country,” said Kerry. “This is the first victory in a larger battle. When we return in April and the emergency war supplemental comes to the floor, I will fight to pass as much of my Military Family Bill of Rights as possible.” “Today's victory matters to families sacrificing for the country they love. Too often, our troops must surrender a part of their income to serve, and too often, small businesses struggle to absorb the loss of an employee. The Landrieu-Kerry plan helps our citizen soldiers, their families and their employers make ends meet. It allows them to rest assured that when they return from Iraq and Afghanistan, their homes and their jobs will be waiting for them. Too much about this budget leaves our nation’s military families behind, so this is one important step in the right direction,” Kerry added. The Landrieu-Kerry amendment provides a tax credit of up to $15,000 per employee to all American businesses that supplement the income of a reservist employee that has been called up to active duty. For small businesses, the legislation also provides a credit of up to $6,000 per employee to assist with the hiring of a temporary replacement for each reservist employee on active duty, and for small manufacturers, this credit limit is $10,000.

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PRESTIGIOUS HAZARDOUS MATERIALS CREDENTIAL OFFERED AS VA BENEFIT FOR ACTIVE-DUTY SERVICE MEMBERS & VETERANS ACHMM, IHMM Work to Support Those Who Served in the U.S. Armed Forces, Help Create Career Opportunities Outside of the Military Active-duty service members, military veterans and their dependents now have an opportunity to earn one of the hazardous materials industry's top credentials as part of a benefit being offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The Institute of Hazardous Materials Management (IHMM), with the support of the Academy of Certified Hazardous Materials Managers (ACHMM), has worked with the VA to have active-duty military as well as "eligible" veterans and their dependents reimbursed for the cost of taking the Certified Hazardous Materials Managers (CHMM®) exam. The CHMM® exam encompasses a broad-based knowledge of science, technology, regulations and management principles pertaining to the field of hazardous materials management. Prior to taking the rigorous three hour exam, the candidate must demonstrate a maturity of judgment regarding management of programs and proper use of resources in the hazardous materials and environmental, health and safety fields. Maturity of judgment is assessed through personal references, demonstrated experience, and possession of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution in a field relevant to hazardous materials management. By successfully passing the comprehensive exam, professionals earn the right to use the prestigious CHMM® credential designation 40

after their name on business cards and stationary, and to stamp reports with a professional certification stamp. "For these young men and women who have served our nation proudly and are returning home seeking a unique opportunity to re-enter the workforce, achieving the CHMM® provides a tremendous jumpstart to a career in the hazardous materials industry," said John Frick, Ph.D., CHMM, Executive Director of IHMM. Frick spearheaded the VA initiative shortly after joining IHMM in 2003 after a 29-year career as a civilian employee at the Department of Defense. "There is a tremendous and growing need within the environmental, health and safety fields to develop a well-trained talent pool. The CHMM® is one of a select few accredited credentials in the industry," Frick added. Today, more than 9,000 professionals are CHMMs practicing in a wide range of disciplines including homeland security, environmental protection, engineering, health sciences, transportation and public safety. The CHMM® program is accredited by the Council of Engineering and Scientific Specialty Boards (CESB). "The military provides an excellent introduction to the hazardous materials industry. Today's service members deal with life and death situations in which they need to make split-second decisions regarding dangerous substances and situations," said, ACHMM

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President-Elect John Mitchell, CHMM, a program manager with Shaw Environmental & Infrastructure, Inc., which provides a broad range of environmental, security and engineering services to clients in the U.S. and abroad. "This program provides a cost-effective means to quickly employ America's heroes. It also serves as a way to promote the hazardous materials industry and create a new generation of hazardous materials managers," said Mitchell, who served from 1983 to1995 with the U.S. Army Reserve as a helicopter crew chief. According to Master Sergeant Randy B. Hart, USAFR of Asheville, North Carolina, "The CHMM® is a mark of excellence within the industry. It is more than just a theory-based credential; the CHMM® is centered in risk management and application and is extremely taskoriented." "With the training learned in the military in terms of explosives, munitions and other hazardous materials, taking those skills to an industrial setting is a natural next step. The VA benefit is truly an added bonus for those of us who served," said Hart, who has taken the CHMM® exam and is awaiting his reimbursement from the VA. He was a safety and explosives instructor with the Air Force and now is a safety, health and environmental manager with Raflatac, Inc., one of the world's leading suppliers of paper-based and filmic pressure sensitive labelstock. Individuals must have a bachelor's degree (or foreign equivalent) and three years of appropriate experience in a related field. The current charge for the CHMM® exam is $240, which includes a $90 non-refundable application fee and a $150 exam fee. After passing the exam, individuals must pay a first- year certification fee ($70) or a prorated amount for a partial first year before certification becomes official. To assist professionals with the CHMM® exam, ACHMM offers a National Overview Course (NOC) based on the body of knowledge of the field of hazardous materials management as defined by IHMM. The three-day course consists of a comprehensive review of environmental laws and regulations and applicable health and safety requirements. The course is designed to assist individuals in preparing for the CHMM® certification examination administered by the IHMM. The NOC is not required, but is offered as one

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of several preparatory review courses for the CHMM® exam. To learn more about the National Overview Course, including times, locations and fees, visit ACHMM's Web site at www.achmm.org. Further information about the CHMM® exam and the VA benefit is available at www.ihmm.org. The VA will reimburse candidates for the cost of the test; however, it will not pay for any of the other fees connected with the certification process. If individuals take the CHMM® exam anytime after October 2, 2002 and meet the eligibility requirements, they may file for reimbursement of the $150 exam fee. Re-take fees also are reimbursable. Candidates should mail a copy of their test results to the VA office that handles their education benefits. To receive a copy of test results or for more information about the IHMM and the VA benefit, candidates can call the IHMM at (301) 984-8969 or send e-mail inquiries to ihmminfo@ihmm.org. For more details on eligibility requirements and reimbursement procedures, visit the VA web site at www.gibill.va.gov or call 1-888-GIBILL-1.

About ACHMM ACHMM (www.achmm.org) is a nonprofit organization with the mission of fostering the professional development of members through educational programs, peer group interaction and recognition of the Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM®) credential as the standard of excellence in the industry. Made up of 66 chapters and more than 6,000 credentialed hazardous materials managers, the Academy is based in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, and is represented in 37 states and the District of Columbia. As a member benefit, ACHMM holds an annual conference featuring high caliber technical presenters and professional networking opportunities. About IHMM The Institute of Hazardous Materials Management (www.ihmm.org) was founded as a nonprofit organization in 1984, and launched the Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM®) program in June of that year. Today, there are more than 13,000 professionals who have received the CHMM® credential. For more information: Alan Greilsamer, Communications Resources, LLC" (703) 760-7007/agreilsamer@communicationsresources.com

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Veterans Enterprise 2005  

An online magazine for America's veterans looking to transition back into civilian life by finding new careers. Discover news, resources, ev...

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