BALTIMORE, June 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Outback Steakhouse concluded its 2011 Thanks for Giving program today with a presentation of a $1 million donation to Operation Homefront, a nonprofit organization providing emergency financial and other assistance to military families and wounded warriors. The check was presented by Outback Steakhouse President Jeff Smith to Jim Knotts, President and CEO, and Amy Palmer, COO of Operation Homefront.
Today’s event began with the Presentation of the Colors by the Maryland National Guard, in the front of the Outback Steakhouse located in Ellicott City, Maryland. Major General James A. Adkins attended the program.
The second annual Thanks for Giving program was launched earlier this year when diners were invited to assist Outback in its efforts to support the troops by ordering from a special Red, White and Bloomin’ menu. The program was kicked off in San Antonio at the Texas National Guard Armory where Outbackers prepared a plated lunch for 300 service members. Country music star Tim McGraw who is a longtime supporter of the troops was on hand to express his appreciation. Together with Smith, they met with four of the families who received assistance as a direct result of Operation Homefront’s ongoing support. They also visited Operation Homefront Village San Antonio – one of the organization’s four transitional housing locations for wounded warrior families.
“The sacrifices that our troops and their families make so that we can enjoy the freedoms we have in the United States is something Outback employees have recognized and appreciated since we opened our doors 23 years ago,” said Smith. “As we express our sincere appreciation to those serving our country, we would also like to thank the countless Americans who rallied behind our Thanks for Giving program.”
Today’s donation to Operation Homefront is the most recent in a long history of Outback’s support of U.S. troops. In June 2002, Outback launched Operation Feeding Freedom, sending a team of 15 Outbackers to Afghanistan to feed American troops stationed there. Since that trip, more than 150 have made another seven trips, serving troops in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Djibouti, Kuwait, Bahrain, Turkey, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and aboard the USS Nimitz in the Persian Gulf. Overall, 167,000 troops have been served at numerous bases, forward operating bases and command and control locations.
“Our service members, wounded warriors and their families need support now more than ever,” Knotts said. “Outback’s generous donation will help these dedicated heroes know that while they are protecting us, someone back home is looking out for them and their families.”
About Outback Steakhouse
Outback Steakhouse was again voted #1 Best Steak in the 2010 Zagat Survey of National Full-Service Restaurant Chains for the second consecutive year. Outback Steakhouse starts fresh every day to create the flavors that our mates crave. Best known for grilled steaks, chicken and seafood, Outback also offers a wide variety of crisp salads and freshly made soups and sides. New creations and grilled classics are made from scratch daily using only the highest quality ingredients sourced from around the world. For more information, please visit www.outback.com or www.facebook.com/Outback.
About Operation Homefront
Operation Homefront provides emergency financial and other assistance to the families of our service members and wounded warriors. A national nonprofit, Operation Homefront leads more than 4,500 volunteers across 25 chapters and met more than 167,000 needs in 2010. A four-star rated charity by watchdog Charity Navigator, nationally, 94 percent of total revenue donated to Operation Homefront goes to programs. For more information about Operation Homefront, please visit www.OperationHomefront.net.
SOURCE Outback Steakhouse