SAINT JOHNS COUNTY – Joe Padlo, a veteran of the United States Marine Corp (USMC) and multiple combat tours will be the keynote speaker at the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce Ponte Vedra Beach (PVB) Division Salute to Veterans event Nov. 15, at the Hilton Garden Inn Ponte Vedra Beach.
The event that will feature Padlo, who was named a Veteran of Influence by the Jacksonville Business Journal in 2016, will also include, Justine Justice, executive director of Operation New Uniform; Richard Tryon, Lt. General, USMC (Ret) who is the senior fellow in international leadership at Hicks Honors College at the University of North Florida and a board member of the Wounded Warrior Project and representatives from K-9’s for Warriors.
“Veterans are very important to the business community. It should not be of any surprise that the men and women who have served our country not only have the characteristics and work ethic to make great employees but they make ideal entrepreneurs as well,” Chamber President/CEO Isabelle Rodriguez said. In fact, the Chamber president / CEO cited a 2017 small business study stating that small business firms owned by veterans employed 5.03 million people, had an annual payroll of $195 billion and receipts of $1.14 trillion. Veteran-Owned Businesses and Their Owners also stated Veteran-owned firms represented 9.1 percent of all U.S. businesses.
About the Keynote Speaker Joe Padlo
Padlo founded U.S. Military Maintenance, a cleaning and maintenance services company, with a mission to employ veterans at a living wage. In 2016, Padlo’s team won Web.com’s Business Breakthrough competition and today the newly renamed organization, Veterans Elite Services, employs 18 former military service men and women.
Padlo also founded Tidy Text, currently in BETA, a technology platform that provides communication and accountability for janitorial and maintenance services. Tidy Text was recently honored at the BizTech Awards.
The 10-year Marine is also a volunteer leader with the local chapter of Team Red, White and Blue, a national not-for-profit seeking to bring veterans and civilians together through physical fitness and social activities.
A Salute to Veterans will be the theme of the regularly scheduled Chamber at Noon event in November. Beginning at 11:30 am and ending at 1 pm, admission for non-members is $35 ($30 for Chamber members) and lunch is included. According to PVB Division Director Toni Boudreaux the aim of the event is to salute our veterans and to acknowledge the important impact they are making on our business community as well.
To register for the event or to find out more about the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce or the Chamber’s Ponte Vedra Beach Division please visit www.sjcchamber.com or call 904.285.2004.