Veterans Day — Remembrance and Action

Each year on November 11 Americans celebrate Veterans Day as a day to thank all veterans, including the living, for their service. This national holiday was proclaimed in November 1919 by President Wilson as the first commemoration of Armistice Day (the day of the cease fire in World War I). (In contrast, Memorial Day is a day for remembering military personnel who died in battle or as a result of battle injuries.)

Besides a day of remembrance by observing a moment of silence at 11 a.m., Veterans Day can also be a day of action, such as:

  • Supporting Veteran-owned businesses.
  • Donating to charities helping veterans.

Veteran-owned businesses

Veteran-owned businesses account for about 9% of all nonfarm businesses in the United States, 5% of total employment and 4.1% of total receipts. Of these businesses, 32.5% operated in the professional, scientific, and technical services industries or in the construction industry. California had the most veteran-owned companies, followed by Texas, Florida, and New York.

Three percent of the total value of all federal prime contract and subcontract awards for each fiscal year must be awarded to small business concerns owned and controlled by service-disabled veterans.

For veterans seeking to start businesses, obtain funding for businesses, or for certain business opportunities, here are some handy resources:

  • VetBiz.gov is the center for veterans enterprise web portal.
  • The Veterans’ Benefit Act of 2010 , which was signed into law on October 13 , 2010, requires the Secretary of the Veterans Administration to verify small business ownership and operate a database of veteran-owned small businesses and service-connected veteran-owned small business in an effort to end contracting with businesses that fraudulently claim to be owned by a veteran.
  • Veterans Corp is a federally-chartered organization to expand the provision of and improve access to technical assistance regarding entrepreneurship for veterans.

Donating to charities helping veterans

There are numerous helpful organizations that provide a wide array of services and assistance to veterans and their families. Here are some top-rated charities serving the interests of veterans and their families:

Check for additional charities at Charity Navigator and Charity Watch.

Note: If you want to claim a charitable contribution for your donation, check with the IRS to see whether the charity is eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions.

To all our veterans, thank you!

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