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[column size=”2/3″]Mr. Bruce Maples and Mr. Rocky Sickman have earned this award due to their tremendous dedication to our Nation’s veterans, their initiative and significant contributions to Hire Heroes USA, through hosting numerous fundraising events and opening the door for many partnership opportunities with companies to help hire veterans.

Bruce Maples is the Chairman of the National Coalition of AssociationsBruce Maples of 7-Eleven Franchisees, a professional trade group that represents the owners of more than 5,000 franchised 7-Eleven stores across the country. Mr. Maples, who most recently served as a vice chairman of the National Coalition, has been a 7-Eleven franchisee since 1988 and an active National Coalition Board member since 1989. He is also president of the Tucson Franchise Owner’s Association. Previously, Mr. Maples served six years as Southwest Regional Chairman of the National Coalition, five years as a 7-Eleven National Advisory Council member, and as Chairman of the Arizona Food Marketing Alliance.[/column][divider style=”divider5″ top_margin=”20″ bottom_margin=”20″]

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[column size=”2/3″]Rocky Sickmann is the Director of Military Sales for Anheuser-Busch. Rocky Sickman 1979, just 15 days into his tour of duty with the U.S. Marine Corps at the American Embassy in Tehran, Iran, Rodney “Rocky” Sickmann became a player in one of the most terrifying events in U.S. history.

On November 4, 1979, after months of turmoil marked by the return of the exiled Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the American Embassy in Tehran was overrun by militants and its employees taken captive. Sergeant Rocky Sickmann, then just 21, was one of 65 Americans taken hostage. Sickmann remained a hostage for 444 days before being released on Jan. 21, 1981 following 14 months of diplomacy by President Jimmy Carter. Three months later, Sickmann retired after six years in the U.S. Marine Corps and entered the private sector, where his military experience has made him a valuable contributor at Anheuser-Busch for nearly 26 years.

As Director of Military Sales, Sickmann is responsible for increasing Anheuser-Busch’s market penetration among the Military by training wholesalers, coordinating marketing and publicity, executing national sales promotions, and planning special military events. Sickmann helped coordinate the “Here’s to the Heroes Tour” which salutes the men and women of the armed forces which allowed Americans to show their support for the troops via recorded messages filmed on location at community events, celebrations and festivals nationwide this during the summer of 2005 which were widely distributed to the U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.[/column]