CONTACT: DWD Communications, 608-266-2722

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Nominations are due September 4, 2017

MADISON – Today, Governor Scott Walker joined Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Ray Allen in calling for Wisconsin citizens to submit nominations for the third annual Wisconsin Job Honor Awards.  The program recognizes individuals who have overcome significant barriers to employment while honoring both their accomplishments and the employers who provide them the opportunity to demonstrate their workplace abilities.  Previous nominees have overcome physical and mental disabilities, criminal convictions and other barriers to achieve gainful employment.  Nominations are due September 4, 2017.

“With an unemployment rate of 3.2 percent and a labor force participation rate that ranks in the top five among all states, it is critical to provide the necessary supports so that anyone who wants to work can overcome barriers, achieve their employment goals and fill the many job openings that are available in our state’s growing economy,” Governor Walker said. “The Wisconsin Job Honor Award provides a way to recognize workers and employers for extraordinary achievements in connecting talent with opportunity.”

Last year, Larson Companies, an Eau Claire based company that operates hotels and restaurants, was recognized for the development of hospitality training academies to provide individuals with disabilities with the training necessary to acquire employment in the hospitality industry.  Larson Companies partnered with DWD’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation to identify candidates to participate in the eight-week in-house training program.  Due to the program’s success, Larson Companies has expanded the program.  Larson Companies operates the Holiday Inn, Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse, Clarion Inn, Green Mill Restaurant, and other properties in the Chippewa Valley.

Hosted by Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce (WMC), the awards will be presented during their Future Wisconsin Economic Summit at the Monona Terrace Community & Convention Center scheduled for November 29, 2017 in Madison.

“Wisconsin’s workforce development system is centered around collaboration and innovative strategies that tap the talents of all who want to work,” DWD Secretary Ray Allen said.  “It is also important to raise awareness of the employers and workers who have transformed lives through the power of employment success.  We thank America’s Job Honor Awards for creating this award program and urge people to submit nominations today.”

For more information, or to submit a nomination, please visit


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