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August 07, 2009

Fire Department wins Support Freedom Award



The City of Cambridge Fire Department has been selected as one of fifteen winners of the 2009 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the highest recognition given by the U.S. Government to employers for their outstanding support of their employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserve.


This year over 3,200 National Guard and Reserve members or their family members from across the country nominated their supportive employers for the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award. This year’s recipients were selected by a national selection board comprised of senior Defense officials and business leaders. The Freedom Award will be presented to Chief Gerald R. Reardon in Washington, D.C. during a formal ceremony at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center on Thursday September 17, 2009.


The department was nominated for the award by Lieutenant Patrick Haggerty, a 16-year veteran of the fire department. Lt. Haggerty holds the rank of Master Sergeant in the Air National Guard 104th Fighter Wing based at Barnes Air National Guard Base in Westfield, MA. He has been a member of the Guard for 19 years. His deployments in recent years have included Saudi Arabia, Germany, England and Curacao.


Several other members of the Cambridge Fire Department have served deployments in recent years in Military Reserve and National Guard units in Afghanistan, Iraq and Kosovo as well as other locations.


"In the eight years our nation has been at war, America's employers - almost universally - have done an outstanding job of supporting their Citizen Warrior employees”, said Dennis M. McCarthy, assistant secretary of defense for reserve affairs.  "These fifteen employers are the 'best of the best' this year. They reflect the powerful synergy that exists between the men and women of the National Guard and Reserve, and their employers."


The Freedom Award was instituted in 1996 under the auspices of the National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) to recognize exceptional support from the employer community.  Previous honorees include American Express, Chrysler, Sears, The Home Depot, the State of Tennessee and the family owned Augustine & Sons farm in Rose Hill, IA.  

For Additional information Contact:  Deputy Chief Gerry Mahoney at 617-349-4944