Congressman Markwayne Mullin (OK-02) took part in his first hearing as a sitting member of the Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee this week. During the hearing, members discussed employment opportunities for our nation’s veterans in the oil and gas industry by hearing from individuals of the industry on what they are doing to employ more veterans.
The hearing focused on the hiring challenges that face our nation’s veterans as they transition into the civilian job market and the vast economic opportunities that await them in the fields related to exploration and development of American energy.
“Oklahoma is also home to a vibrant energy economy with in fact, one in every six jobs in our state either directly or indirectly supported by the oil and natural gas industry,” said Mullin. “And my congressional district in Oklahoma has a long history in military service. I feel that there is a real opportunity for us to be a leader in veteran hiring into this growing sector.”
“I have observed the good work and determination that veterans have brought to my company over the years,” Mullin continued. “We employ as many veterans as we can because they have a sense of responsibility and understand what it takes to get a job done—an asset that can benefit companies and industries across the state.”
Among the subcommittee witnesses who testified during the hearing was Michael Nasche. Nasche served in Operation Iraqi Freedom and currently still serves in the Reserves. He is also Veterans Outreach and Engagement Specialist at Baker Hughes. Baker Hughes has more than 70 self-identified veterans in Oklahoma and more than half of those individuals reside in Claremore and surrounding areas.
During the hearing, Nasche cited the effects that investing in veterans has on a business.
“It’s one thing [for someone] to have an “I Support The Troops” bumper sticker on the back of their car and it’s another thing for them to partner together and go out in their local community and get involved in an organization that is giving back right then and there to wounded veterans, or homeless veterans or veterans that are seeking jobs,” said Nasche. “That translates into more people wanting to work for Baker Hughes, and the veterans we already have at Baker Hughes wanting to stay, and the referrals.”