From left: Prince George's County Economic Development Corporation President and CEO Jim Coleman, EDC Acting Workforce Services Director Walter Simmons and U.S. Department of Labor Assistant Secretary Michael Michaud congratulate Army veteran Clinton Campbell on his conditional job offer for security services at the recent "Operation 500" Veteran Jobs and Resource Fair on Sept. 12. (Courtesy of EDC)
From left: Prince George's County Economic Development Corporation President and CEO Jim Coleman, EDC Acting Workforce Services Director Walter Simmons and U.S. Department of Labor Assistant Secretary Michael Michaud congratulate Army veteran Clinton Campbell on his conditional job offer for security services at the recent "Operation 500" Veteran Jobs and Resource Fair on Sept. 12. (Courtesy of EDC)

At the launch of its Sept. 12 veterans jobs recruitment fair that commemorated the second installation of “Operation 500,” the Prince George’s County Economic Development Corporation welcomed top Obama administration official Michael Michaud, assistant secretary for veterans.

With the goal of Operation 500 aimed at securing high-wage jobs for 500 county veterans by January, Michaud’s was one of more than 30 private sector employers and resource partners who participated in the jobs fair, in which 40 veterans walked away with solid employment opportunities, officials said.

“Operation 500 is committed to our veterans,” said EDC President and CEO Jim Coleman. “I have a strong belief in serving those who have served us. It is unacceptable for any veteran who wants to work to be unemployed, particularly when there are more than $10 billion in projects in the pipeline in this county. The momentum is growing for job opportunities, and thanks to our employer partners, our veterans are well on their way to get back to work. We are leaving no veteran behind in Prince George’s County.”

Michaud said he was particularly impressed by EDC’s pairing of businesses with job seekers.

“I’m glad to be here this morning, and I commend Jim Coleman and Walter Simmons for their hard work in pulling together this great event specifically for veterans,” Michaud said. “Having had the chance to speak with a number of the employers here today, they are very excited about hiring veterans and are committed to doing so. As the assistant secretary of labor for vets, part of my job is to ensure that veterans get into jobs. We will be partnering with the EDC’s workforce division to give them the assistance they need from the federal government. That’s what it is all about. Look forward to our partnership.”

In addition, Simmons explained during the event why Operation 500 is the best solution to the veteran unemployment issue.

“Maryland consistently ranks top in veteran unemployment,” Simmons said. “Thanks to the vision of Jim Coleman and the support of County Executive Baker, we are going to put a stop to veteran unemployment. If you are a veteran looking for a job, the Prince George’s One Stop Center is here to help you. If you are an employer looking for veterans and have had trouble finding them, look no further.”

The EDC will host its next Operation 500 recruitment event on Oct. 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at EDC headquarters at 1801 McCormick Drive in Largo.

To reserve a seat for the fair, visit www.pgcedc.com/events or call Nicole Edwards at 301-583-4650.

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