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NAI Global launches program to create jobs for veterans.

NAI Global, the world's largest network of independent commercial real estate firms, said it would offer returning veterans of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan the opportunity to begin a new career in commercial real estate.

NAI Global manages a network of 5,000 professionals in 350 offices around the world. NAI Global and its member firms are committing as an organization to create opportunities for an initial 60 service members throughout the United States.

The organization's broad geographic reach will allow most U.S. military veterans the opportunity to seek employment in or near their place of residence.

To manage recruiting, NAI Global has formed a five-member steering committee of U.S. veterans, led by NAI Global chairman Gerald Finn, himself a veteran who previously served in the military.

In addition, the organization has retained Caliper, a 40-year-old global human resources consulting and assessment firm, to assist in the initial evaluation of veterans seeking employment.

NAI Global, an equal opportunity employer, will pay all costs associated with Caliper's initial evaluation, and will offer additional support to its local member firms in future training and development of veterans, specifically.

"We have many veterans working within NAI Global and, not surprisingly, there is a profound sense of gratitude as well as deep desire to assist service men and women wishing to enter the civilian workforce," Finn commented.

"Over the years, we have found that veterans, in particular, make terrific commercial real estate professionals, bringing strong leadership, problem-solving skills, and a disciplined approach to work. We would hope that others within the commercial real estate industry join our initial effort, in order to expand the employment opportunities for all veterans."

Recent data paint a grim picture for the approximately 250,000 U.S. service men and women who leave active duty annually, Finn noted. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows nearly one-in-five veterans age 20 to 24 are unemployed, three times the national average.

Veterans surveyed cited the lack of available jobs in their place of residence as the primary challenge for finding gainful employment in the civilian workforce.

"As one of the largest real estate service providers in the world, with an extensive network of offices nationally, we saw ourselves as able to overcome this specific challenge," Finn added.

"I've been thrilled with the level of support from our members in the U.S. and internationally, many of whom have made pledges to hire veterans in the coming years.

"We will hire as quickly as we can, and we plan to begin advertising and attending military job fairs this year in order to make sure veterans who are interested in a civilian career understand fully our hiring commitment and how we might be able to help."
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Comment:NAI Global launches program to create jobs for veterans.
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Apr 4, 2007
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