You've just gotta love this idea and congratulate Norton Ditto CEO Dick Hite, who in conjunction with Maj. Gen. U.S. Army (Ret.) Steve Raben and U.S. Army Major Tyson Voelkel, founded Operation Suits for Soldiers, a Houston-based non-profit assisting soldiers transitioning from military into the workforce. The trio officially announced the new assistance program at a cocktail reception at Norton Ditto, where more than 100 supporters joined the cause.
Former President George H.W. Bush was among the first, contributing an almost-new blazer.
OSFS will provide professional clothing, employment training and additional services to returning soldiers through the military's transitioning program offered at Ellington Field. Partners in the OSFS program in addition to Norton Ditto are Burnett Staffing Specialists, Dress for Success (providing clothing for female soldiers) and Rice University Veterans in Business Association. Even the Houston Rockets are getting into the act by providing two free tickets to the team's final regular season home game to the first 100 soldiers in the inaugural OSFS program.
Norton Ditto is contributing new suits, sports coats, shirts and ties through manufacturers H. Freeman, Robert Talbott and Scott Barber and is overseeing collection of top-quality, gently-worn suits and sports jackets from donors. Former President George H.W. Bush was among the first, contributing an almost-new blazer. Norton Ditto will provide free tailoring on site at Ellington Field, once the clothes are assembled and soldiers brought in for fittings.
Among guests at the reception were 20 transitioning soldiers and a number of retired officers including OSFS Advisory Board member Bob Ivany, Major General U.S. Army (Ret.) and president of the University of St. Thomas. Endorsing the program in official remarks were were E.A. “Buddy” Grantham, the city's director of Veterans Affairs, and Lt. Col. Chris Govekar, chief of staff, 75th Training Mission Command at Ellington Field.