Tom Axtell, General Manager
Memorial Day originated as Decoration Day after the American Civil War. It is a day for remembrance of those who have died in service to our country. This Memorial Day, we honor our American heroes as we have done for more than 25 years with the live broadcast of the National Memorial Day Concert. This night of remembrance pays tribute to the service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform, their families at home and all those who have given their lives for our country as it airs live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol before an audience of tens of thousands, millions at home on PBS, and to our troops around the world via Armed Forces Network.
Also this month, The Homefront provides a revealing look at the resilience of America’s military families, and we’ll feature The Lincoln Awards, an all-star concert event to recognize outstanding achievement and excellence in providing opportunities and support to veterans and military families. Online, we’ll spotlight moving personal stories of veterans throughout the valley.
Almost 20% of homes in the Vegas PBS service area include a veteran, reservist or active military service member — well above the national average. The Vegas PBS multi-platform Veterans Coming Home community impact effort includes television programming, online course content for and about veterans, and the convening of resource providers for returning veterans and their families.
Veterans coming home to Southern Nevada face personal challenges, a new economy and lost jobs due to the recession. Vegas PBS has partnered with local agencies such as The Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), the Governor’s Green Zone, American Red Cross, Goodwill, and Hero2Hired to host job fairs, provide occupational assessments and to offer scholarships for online training grants to veterans seeking employment.
A Vegas PBS Veterans Services Coordinator works directly with agencies and veterans to connect veterans to the resources they need to obtain employment or advance their careers. More than 440 veterans have received grant-funded Vegas PBS occupational assessments that allowed them to equate their military skills to jobs that are readily available locally. Dozens of others have decided to enroll in our online career certification courses to obtain the training needed for their future career aspirations.
Your financial contribution makes it possible for Vegas PBS to air compelling and informative programs on military history and conflict, share personal and inspiring stories of veterans and their families, and produce local documentaries that illustrate the unique veteran experience in Southern Nevada. We use TV spots to encourage veterans to access online and community events, and have secured corporate gifts for nonbroadcast services. We thank you for your support, and we thank all our veterans for their service to our nation.