Celebrating Our Veterans
Our expanding network of nearly 400 veterans is a source of tremendous pride for Clorox. On this Veterans Day, we celebrate our employees and all veterans nationwide. We thank you for your service and sacrifices, and we thank your families for their continuous support before, during and after your call of duty.
We invite you to meet four of our veterans, as profiled by Clorox Associate Marketing Manager and Army Veteran Paul Escajadillo.
Blake M. Nelson, Jr., safety and health coordinator – Kingsford Manufacturing Operations, joined Clorox in 2012 at the Parsons, West Virginia, plant as a production worker for the Kingsford® team. Prior to joining Clorox, Blake served in the U.S. Navy for 21 years, retiring as a (ADC AW) Chief Aviation Machinist Mate, Air Warfare Specialist. He worked on several aviation platforms and saw duty at NAS Cecil Field, NAS Patuxent River, NavSta Mayport and NAS Jacksonville. During his time on sea duty, Blake served eight tours in the Middle East (Afghanistan and Iraq). His final command in the Navy before retirement was the Strike Warfare Test Squadron, in which he served as the Test and Evaluation Chief for the F-35 Lightning program.
Blake’s awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Navy Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. Chief Blake Nelson retired in October 2010.
Annie Ellement, senior demand planner joined the Burt’s Bees® team in Durham, North Carolina, in 2014. Annie graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 2003 as an Airborne qualified Quartermaster Second Lieutenant. She served five years on active duty and three years in the Army Reserves ending her service as a captain. Annie was stationed at Fort Hood from 2004 – 2008 in a variety of roles within the First Cavalry Division including: fuel and ammunition platoon leader, general’s aide and a brigade logistics planner. During her time on active duty, she was deployed twice to Taji, Iraq, for a total of 22 months. She also served as a special advisor for Women in Combat during her time in the reserves and was a Special Operations spouse until 2014 when her husband medically retired.
Doug Whitmire, training and qualification pillar owner – Aberdeen, Maryland, spent more than 24 years in the military before joining Clorox. Retiring from the U.S. Army in 1996, Doug served as a Unit Motor Sergeant, Unit Maintenance Technical Warrant Officer and Support/Staff Management Technical Warrant Officer in various units. His assignments included the 1/73rd Field Artillery Battalion of the 18th Field Artillery Brigade (Fort Bragg, North Carolina), 8th Psychological Operations Battalion JFK Center (Fort Bragg), 709th Combat Military Police Battalion 4th Combat Military Police Brigade (Frankfurt, Germany), 64th Combat Service Battalion 4th Brigade 4th Infantry Division Forward (Wiesbaden, Germany), 5/17 Calvary Maintenance Support Team (ITV) (Forward) 2nd Infantry Division (Camp Gary Owen, Korea).
Doug’s awards include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal (2 OLC), Army Commendation Medal (6 OLC), Army Achievement Medal (1 OLC), Army Good Conduct Medal (1st award), National Defense Service Medal and Army Service Ribbon.
Ken Mitchell, administrative resource – Forest Park, Georgia, started at Clorox
five years ago as a packaging operator. Ken served as a Marine for four years working as an Avionics Technician at Cherry Point, NC, supporting CH-46 Sea Knight Rescue Helicopters. While stationed there, he played rugby and was elected to the All Marine Corps team that traveled within the U.S. and played against both military and university teams.
Ken talks about attributes — flexible process-driven, punctual — that translate easily from the military to the corporate sector. “You can depend on a veteran,” Ken says. “We are very dependable — discipline is the basis of how we work — and when you work with a veteran, you know what you have!”
Prior to joining Clorox, Paul Escajadillo served in the U.S. Army Special Operations Command as a Psychological Operations Non-Commissioned Officer based out of Fort Bragg, North Carolina, from 2005 until 2012. Paul deployed to Ecuador (2007), Colombia (2008) and twice to Afghanistan (2009-2010, 2011). In his more than seven years of service, Paul was the recipient of the Combat Action Badge, Parachutist Badge, Bronze Star Medal (1 oak leaf cluster), and Joint Service Commendation Medal, among other awards and decorations.