News Column

Large Iowa companies Commit to Hire 2,500 Veterans

January 27, 2014

By Rod Boshart, The Gazette, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Major employers in Iowa have agreed to step up the hiring of veterans.
Major employers in Iowa have agreed to step up the hiring of veterans.

A coalition of major Iowa employers Monday committed to a goal of hiring 2,500 veterans over the next five years.

Member of the Iowa Business Council -- a non-profit, non-partisan organization comprised of major Iowa employers, state universities and the Iowa Bankers Association -- on Monday announced support for Gov. Terry Branstad's Home Base Iowa initiative. The centerpiece of the governor's 2014 legislative agenda is intended to serve as a comprehensive source for job services available to veterans who are expected to return to the civilian workforce in larger numbers as national military operations are scaled back.

"The Iowa Business Council is proud to support such a noble cause," said Larry Zimpleman, chairman, president and CEO of Principal Financial Group who also guides the business group whose member companies touch one in six Iowans and represent all of Iowa's major industries -- from manufacturing and bioscience to finance and technology.

Cumulatively, IBC members employ nearly 250,000 people in all 99 Iowa counties.

During his weekly news conference, where the IBC commitment was announced, Branstad said the welcoming effort to attract both newly discharged military veterans and those who served in past conflicts or service is geared to match job opportunities with veterans who are trained, motivated and looking for a second career.

The initiative to market Iowa as a veteran-friendly state allows individual companies to apply for special designation if they promise to hire a specified number of veterans and meet other criteria. Branstad said the IBC members join companies in Greene and Howard counties who have applied to provide up to 125 jobs under the new effort.

For more information about Home Base Iowa and how to support and engage veterans, please visit: www.homebaseiowa.org.

Original headline: Large Iowa companies commit to hire 2,500 veterans over five years



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