(10/22/12) — A U.S. veteran of the Afghanistan War and recipient of a Bronze Star held a grand re-opening of his Subway restaurant franchise in West Haven, Conn., this month. It was orchestrated as an initiative to hire vets at Subways with funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Patriot Express Loan Program through Webster.
Before re-opening the restaurant, Cdr. Michael A. Thomas was senior advisor to U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, where he was instrumental in helping to craft the Honoring All Veterans Act. As a result of that work, and in conjunction with development staff at Subway, senior officials at the SBA and Webster, Thomas launched his current initiative, a program to actively recruit, train and employ veterans in the Subway franchising business. Rose Mauriello, vice president, SBA sales officer, and West Haven Branch Manager Nancy Guman were instrumental in guiding Thomas through the process.
The SBA created the very popular SBA Patriot Express Loan Program in June 2007. Known as the “GI Bill” for businesses, it has a maximum loan amount of up to $500,000 and is available to all honorably discharged veterans from active duty, National Guard or reserve service. To read more about the program, click here to read a blog post on “The Bank Roll” by Webster’s Bob Polito, senior vice president and director of Government Guaranteed Lending.