Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is big on veterans, and in honor of Veterans Day, he presided over the vet-friendly christening of Valor, Amazon Air’s 40th Boeing 767 freighter.
In a tweet, Bezos said the name pays tribute to “the thousands of Amazonian veterans and military spouses delivering for our customers every day.”
A cheering crowd, including more than 100 Amazon veterans and military spouses, was on hand for today’s ceremony at Long Beach Airport in California. After an appropriate drum roll, Bezos pulled down a banner that was slung over the plane’s nose, revealing the plane’s name.
“Introducing Valor!” Bezos said. Amazon said the name was chosen by Warriors@Amazon, an employee affinity group for veterans.
Had the privilege today of unveiling our newest Amazon Air 767 – "Valor" – named in honor of the thousands of Amazonian veterans and military spouses delivering for our customers every day. #VeteransDay #AmazonWarriors pic.twitter.com/bKHDQgb1TN
— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) November 12, 2018
Even though Bezos isn’t a military veteran himself, he’s taken steps to boost veterans in his professional role as well as in his political inclinations.
In 2016, Bezos pledged to hire and train 25,000 more veterans and military spouses over a five-year period, adding to the 10,000 veterans who were already in Amazon’s workforce at the time. Amazon says it currently employs 18,000 vets and military spouses.
This August, Amazon’s first class of Veteran Technical Apprentices graduated from their cloud-support training program, conducted in cooperation with Apprenti.
And in September, a cross-partisan, veteran-focused political action committee called With Honor announced that it received a $10 million contribution from Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie Bezos. That represents the Bezos family’s biggest political contribution to date.
Today Amazon announced that it would be expanding the Veteran Technical Apprenticeship program to 1,000 apprentices, and broadening the program to include military spouses. The company said it would be expanding Warriors@Amazon as well, with the group’s 100th chapter due for launch in the weeks ahead.