Veterans share patriotism, pride and productivity while also promoting 'military work ethic'
A group of veteran-owned business leaders joined "Fox & Friends Weekend" on Sunday as part of celebrating National Invest in Veterans Week, observed every year from March 1 through 7.
During this first week of March, aspiring and established veteran business owners and their many important contributions to the economy are highlighted and honored.
Some 2.4 million veteran-owned businesses exist across this country, "Fox & Friends Weekend" noted.
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Those businesses employ roughly 5.8 million fellow veterans.
First up on the program was Bill Deutch, founder and CEO of Military Made and Hiring America, who said he's been operating in the veteran space for about 15 years.
He founded the Military Made website to share select veteran-created products and gifts.
He and his company are "not only driving revenue back to the veteran and military community but [also helping] their small businesses thrive, grow and in turn create more jobs for veterans," the website notes.
Every time someone supports Military Made by making a purchase, "a portion of the profits goes directly to Hiring America Serves, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to educating veterans and their spouses on how to develop meaningful careers post-service," the company says.
"We came across so many veterans and entrepreneurs," he said, and they wanted to "further support" the community on a website (militarymade.com) to showcase a wide variety of veteran-made products.
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He said a number of these businesses are food-driven, including grill boxes that include sauces, meat rubs and more.
Next up were Jerry and Tracy Flanagan of Pennsylvania, co-founders of JDog Brands, which helps veterans interested in running their own small businesses through franchises.
Its website explains there's an opportunity for veterans or military members to own a business and help serve their communities at the same time.
It operates a "proven system," it says, that gets veterans into business quickly and "has low start-up costs and high margins."
The website also notes, "JDog is a nationally recognized brand offering franchise opportunities through JDog Junk Removal & Hauling and JDog Carpet Cleaning & Floor Care. We specialize in the home and commercial service industry, providing junk removal and hauling as well as floor, upholstery and carpet cleaning."
It adds that it's "known for our military work ethic and employment of veterans."
It has over 300 locations across the country – and aims to get veteran unemployment under 1%.
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"Our goal is to put up about 1,000 locations in the next 10 years," said Jerry Flanagan, an Army veteran (jdogbrands.com).
Tracy Flanagan, for her part, hosts a podcast that shares information about veterans and military spouses, including all those who are "doing amazing things" post-service.
Also appearing on the program on Sunday morning was Bear Handlon, founder and CEO of Born Primitive (bornprimitive.com), which began in 2014.
He's a former Yale football player and Navy officer.
A veteran owned-and-operated company, Born Primitive says on its website that it's "proud of our country and what it stands for. We strive to inspire our customers by exemplifying the values of the men and women who’ve inspired us — sacrifice, honor and the willingness to defend our freedoms at all costs."
It also notes, "We will forever be indebted to the heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice while down range or in the line of duty. Lest we forget."
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Handlon said the company basically started as a "side hustle" while he was serving in the military, but it now has taken on a life of its own.
Nine years later, he said, the company has 82 employees.
And over half of them, he said "are made up of veterans, former first responders and spouses of those individuals."
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Born Primitive has over 1,200 products offered for sale on the site – not just leisure wear but many other items as well.
To learn more, watch the video at the top of this article, or click here to access it.