ARLINGTON, Va. – New Kensington, Pa.-based Yerecic Label was honored by the Department of Defense when it received the 2010 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award on Sept. 23 at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC. This is the highest recognition given by the US government to employers for their outstanding support of employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve.

Yerecic Label was one of 15 employers nationwide to receive this year's Freedom Award at a ceremony attended by members of Congress, senior military officials and business industry leaders. For video of Yerecic Label receiving the 2010 Freedom Award, visit and videos can be found under the media tab.

Before the ceremony began, Art Yerecic, president of Yerecic Label, and the other Freedom Award recipients, met with Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, where he was thanked for superior support of the nation's citizen soldiers. Almost 2,500 nominations for the award were submitted by Guard and Reserve service members or their families from across the nation.

Nominated by the company's vice president of manufacturing, Yerecic Label has been a manufacturer of on-pack labeling for more than 40 years. At present, three of the company's employees are actively serving in the military. The support for their Guard and Reserve employees includes sending care packages and providing follow-up with the families at home.

Yericic’s president gives his personal phone number to families of deployed employees, should they need any additional support.

Almost one-half of the total US military strength resides in the Guard and Reserve. The Department of Defense shares these citizen warriors with their civilian employers, many of whom provide significant support to their employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve.

The Freedom Award is a Secretary of Defense award that was instituted in 1996 under the auspices of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) to recognize exceptional support from the employer community.

ESGR is a Department of Defense agency established in 1972 whose mission is to develop and promote employer support for Guard and Reserve service by advocating relevant initiatives, recognizing outstanding support, increasing awareness of applicable laws, and resolving conflict between employers and service members.