Entergy Employees to Discuss Veterans Hiring Issues on NBC’s Today Show
‘Hiring Our Heroes’ Veterans Employment Fair Set to Follow Later in the Week
Buchanan, N.Y. – Two Entergy employees, Gary Taylor, group president of utility operations, and Mike Wright, maintenance supervisor at Indian Point Energy Center, are scheduled to be featured Monday on NBC’s Today show to discuss Entergy’s commitment to veterans in the workplace.
Taylor and Wright were recently interviewed by Tom Brokaw at Indian Point to highlight a national campaign that connects military veterans with job opportunities. Entergy is one of the newest members and a top-level Chairman’s Circle sponsor of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Hiring Our Heroes campaign.
Wright talked with Brokaw about his Navy experience as a nuclear machinists' mate and ships diver aboard the U.S.S. Dallas during Operation Desert Shield and how it prepared him for a career in the nuclear power industry. He also discussed how his colleagues at Indian Point supported his service in the New York Army National Guard in both Iraq and Afghanistan.
"Entergy was there the entire time, going above and beyond what is required by law to make sure that my family was taken care of and any issues we had were solved in a timely manner," stated Wright. "My return to work was seamless and they always made me and my family feel appreciated for our service."
Taylor, who is a driving force behind Entergy’s new Hiring Our Heroes initiative, had a chance to discuss Entergy’s philosophy with Brokaw.
“The jobless rate for veterans between the ages of 18 to 24 has been roughly double the rate for their nonmilitary peers,” said Taylor. “I am proud to be a part of this initiative where we can play a role in doing right by our veterans. Not only is it the right thing to do, it also makes good business sense to recruit these highly trained and motivated individuals.”
Wright, who was hired at Indian Point in 1992 as a nuclear mechanic, was deployed to Ground Zero after the Sept.11 terrorist attacks to help provide security at bridges, tunnels and power plants. Two years later, he was deployed to Iraq, where he spent a year as the fire support officer and supervised a 10-person fire support unit. While in Iraq, Wright's company helped build the Iraqi National Guard forces by developing and implementing a basic combat training facility and course for local recruits.
Wright returned from Iraq in 2005 and resumed his duties as a nuclear instructor. He was again deployed in 2008 to Afghanistan where he served as a field artillery mentor and Command Sergeant Major Mentor for an Afghan Battalion. He returned from Afghanistan in January 2009 and retired from the National Guard.
As a sponsor of the Hiring Our Heroes campaign, Entergy will be participating in numerous veteran employment fairs throughout the year. The campaign targets all unemployed veterans but focuses on those who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.
On Wednesday, March 28, Taylor and Wright will represent Entergy at a veterans employment fair aboard the U.S.S. Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in Manhattan. The job fair for veteran job seekers, active duty military members, Guard and Reserve members, and eligible spouses will be held from 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM.
“We believe businesses of all sizes have a duty to recruit the men and women who have made such extraordinary sacrifices for our country. Just as importantly, Entergy and other employers need the type of disciplined, organized and skilled workers you regularly find among veterans,” added Taylor.
Entergy and the rest of the utility industry face a growing challenge in the years ahead as members of the Baby Boom head toward retirement. More than 50 percent of the industry’s workforce is 45 years of age or older.
Entergy Corporation is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, and it is the second-largest nuclear generator in the United States. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.8 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $11 billion and approximately 15,000 employees.