BUSINESS

BASF nominated for Freedom Award

Staff reports
Brig. Gen. James Cobb (Ret.) presents BASF employee Mark Hughes with a certificate commemorating his company’s nomination for the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award.

GEISMAR – BASF was recently nominated for the 2009 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the U.S. government’s highest recognition given to employers for exceptional support of their employees serving in the National Guard and Reserve.

Employers were nominated for the Freedom Award for providing support, such as continued benefits, differential pay and family assistance. A national selection board will select up to 15 recipients from the pool of nominees for this year’s award. The selections are expected to be announced this summer.

Only members of the National Guard and Reserve or their family members are eligible to nominate their employers for the honor. BASF was one of 36 companies in Louisiana nominated for the Freedom Award.

Mark Hughes, a 15-year employee of BASF’s Geismar site who is enlisted in the Army Reserve, nominated BASF for the award. Hughes, a member of the Army Reserve, served a 13-month tour of duty in Iraq and Kuwait. His wife, Jona, is a member of the National Guard.

Brig. Gen. James Cobb (Ret.) traveled to the BASF site to present a certificate commemorating the nomination to Hughes. At a later ceremony, Mike Cohen, senior vice-president and general manager of BASF’s Geismar site, presented the certificate to BASF Corporation Chairman and CEO Kurt Bock.

“BASF appreciates the importance and sacrifices involved with serving one’s country,” said Bock. “These volunteers devote a great deal of their time and make many sacrifices to help keep the National Guard and Reserve strong.”

The Freedom Award was instituted in 1996 by the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense agency established in 1972 that seeks to promote a culture in which all American employers support and value the military service of their employees.

Pictured from left Mike Cohen, senior vice-president and general manager of BASF’s Geismar site, presents BASF Corporation Chairman and CEO Kurt Bock with a certificate commemorating BASF’s nomination for the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award.