Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve names Mike Ritz as the Rhode Island Chair

PROVIDENCE, RI – (September 27, 2012) The Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense agency, is proud to announce that Mike Ritz of Providence, RI was recently selected and named as the new Chair for Rhode Island.

“As an Army Veteran, myself, I’m honored to have been appointed to this leadership role,” said Ritz. “ESGR’s mission is critically important to our state and our nation.”

Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) was established in 1972 to develop and maintain employer support for Guard and Reserve service. ESGR advocates relevant initiatives, recognizes outstanding support, increases awareness of applicable laws, and resolves conflict between service members and employers. Paramount to ESGR’s mission is encouraging employment of Guardsmen and Reservists who bring integrity, global perspective and proven leadership to the civilian workforce. Effective October 1, 2012, Ritz will take charge of Rhode Island ESGR and oversee the implementation of the mission.

“As the Executive Director of Leadership Rhode Island, appointed as the Chairman of ESGR, I’ll have unique insight and connections to further promote cooperation and understanding between Reserve Component Service members and their civilian employers,” affirms Ritz. “I look forward to working closely with Major General Kevin McBride, Rhode Island’s Adjutant General, to further strengthen the mission.”

Ritz took an oath of office and was sworn in as the new Rhode Island Chair during a formal ceremony at the Mark Center in Washington D.C. on September 20, 2012. Ritz will serve at the pleasure of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs. The position carries a three-year term and the protocol of a military two star flag officer. Ritz will provide the leadership and vision for a team of three full-time staff and more than 40 dedicated volunteers spread across the state.

Ritz is currently the Executive Director of Leadership Rhode Island. He has a long and distinguished record of association with numerous community volunteer organizations.

With almost half of our Nation’s military force residing in the Guard and Reserve, Ritz will have a direct impact on these brave men and women and their civilian employers.

“The patriotic support of America’s employers and the employees they share with the nation ensures the viability of the all-volunteer force, and thus our national security. ESGR applauds employers who practice personnel policies that support employee participation in the Guard and Reserve,” stated Ritz.

More information about ESGR Employer Outreach Programs and volunteer opportunities is available at www.esgr.mil, or by calling Ariana McNeil, Program Support Technician of RI ESGR at 401.275.4347.

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