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NEWS | Jan. 23, 2014

NEX general manager receives ESGR award

By Airman 1st Class Clayton Cupit

Beth Munoz, Joint Base Charleston - Weapons Station Navy Exchange general manager, was presented the Above and Beyond Award by Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Jan. 17, 2014, at the ESGR Annual Awards Banquet held at the Embassy Suites in Columbia, S.C.

ESGR is a Department of Defense agency that develops and promotes a culture in which employers support and value the military service of their employees.

The award recognizes those employers at the state and local level who have gone above and beyond the legal requirements for supporting Guard and Reserve members by granting leave and providing support. The award is given to select employers from each state that has companies employing Guardsmen and reservists.

"The award is very humbling," said Munoz. "It's a reflection of all the hard work my staff has done."

Munoz was nominated for the award by Alex Schmidt, NEX loss prevention manager, who is also a member of the S.C. Army National Guard and is enrolled in Army Officer Candidate School.

While working his full-time job at the NEX, Schmidt is expected to maintain the standards of the OCS that he attends part-time.

"Unlike the federal OCS program, which lasts about two months, the state OCS program is spread out across 18 months," said Schmidt. "For me to complete OCS, I need the support of my employer. Beth goes above and beyond to make sure I have time allotted for my duties."

To ensure Schmidt and other Guard and reservists can fulfill their military obligations, Munoz helps coordinate their schedules so they can balance their duty and non-duty work.

"For example, inventory is coming up, and this is one of the busiest times for the store," said Schmidt. "My Reserve dates conflict with our inventory. It would be understandable for the employer to ask me to be here, but with Beth, she understands what the requirements are for this program and allowed me the time off. My commitment to OCS would have suffered without her support."

The Above and Beyond Award is given in limited numbers and presented annually by each state's ESGR committee.

In addition to this award, Munoz also received the Patriotic Employer Award from ESGR for her contributions to National Security and protecting liberty and freedom by supporting employee participation in America's National Guard and Reserve force.