A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Commentary: Thank you, Roland Baxley, for your service – and for hiring nation's veterans

By Brendon Potts
Special to KyForward

I am proud to know Roland Baxley. He has served our country for years, first as a member of the United States Navy and later as a small business owner that employs military veterans.

Ronald Baxley (Photo provided)

Roland Baxley (Photo provided)

I met Roland through my work as a senior manager with FedEx Ground. Roland owns Bluegrass Delivery of KY, Inc., a company based in Lexington that picks up and delivers FedEx Ground packages, a company he founded in 2007 with a single truck. It has grown into a thriving small business with eight trucks that employs six full-time workers along with additional staff during busy times such as the upcoming peak holiday delivery season.

Before entering the business world, Roland served in the U.S. Navy from 1982 to 86. He was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal by the Commander of the Sixth Fleet in 1986 for his service in the admiral’s command center during the airstrikes against Libya.

In 2011, when Roland’s success in business allowed him to expand Bluegrass Delivery, he made a conscious decision to hire veterans. Like many of us, Roland knows military veterans are professional and driven to succeed. Today, three of his full-time employees are serving in the National Guard and one is a Navy veteran. In addition, two of his temporary seasonal drivers are National Guard veterans.

This Veteran’s Day, I want to thank Roland and all the other employers out there who go out of their way to hire and support the current and former members of our armed services. Our country owes you and those you employ a debt of gratitude.

Brendon Potts is senior manager for Fed-Ex, Lexington.

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