Higher Quest Foundation Spotlight: Interview

As we gear up for 14ers for the famished, we sat down with one of the founders of the Higher Quest Foundation, Rick Hermanns, to discuss his vision for the foundation.

What First Inspired you to found the Higher Quest Foundation?

I believe we have a Biblical mandate to help those less fortunate. We have been blessed as a company, and the foundation is one of our ways to assist veterans and the hungry.

What makes fish farming different than just giving people money to buy food?

Teaching people to fish farm solves the ongoing problem of hunger rather than treating the immediate symptom.

What makes fish farming a sustainable way to support overseas charities?

It is hard for people to financially support a cause year after year. Supporting the building of a fish farm allows for the donor’s gift to keep on giving for potentially years and years.

What are some long term goals of the Higher Quest Foundation?

Generally we would like to be able to do more to ensure veterans be given job on a domestic level. Internationally, we want to continue building fish farms globally and are currently working on setting up a new training center overseas so we can further expand our reach. We are also seeking to discover cost effective ways of storing food in areas prone to famine. In some places, it is estimated that more than 1/3 of all food is spoiled or wasted.

What can someone in the US do to support the Higher Quest Foundation and it’s goal of ending world hunger in a sustainable way?

There are several ways to get involved:

  • You could become a volunteer to be trained and set a fish farm up.
  • You could identify a potential partner for us to build a fish farm with or for
  • Tell your friends about the potential of fish farming to increase awareness
  • Cash donations are always welcome

Trojan Labor Scholarship Recipient

The 2017-2018 Trojan Labor Scholarship recipient at Palm Beach Atlantic University is Richard Santos.

Richard Santos is a rising Junior from Pembroke Pines, FL.  He is a pre-Pharmacy major.  Richard serves as a regular volunteer in our Rosemary Village after school program.  The Rosemary Village after school program is located in an economically impoverished and under served community in the Tamarind area of West Palm Beach, FL.

In addition to the  time he spends off campus tutoring children, Richard also serves on campus in the Impact Leadership Program.  Richard believes that “love should be the driving force behind all service.”  After he graduates, Richard plans to enter pharmacy school.

American Hero Award Recipients 2017

Each year, Trojan Labor, Acrux Staffing, and the Higher Quest Foundation host the American Hero Awards. The ceremony recognizes two American service men or women who have gone above the call of duty in service to their country.

We are pleased to announce this year’s Ultimate Hero Award Recipient: Pfc. Cody James Patterson.

To read more about this year’s Ultimate Hero click here.

This year’s American Hero Award Recipient is Staff Sergeant Jeffery M. Dawson.

To read his story click here.

 

American Hero Award Recipient 2017: Staff Sergeant Jeffrey Dawson

The 2017 American Hero Award recipient is Staff Sergeant Jeffrey Dawson. He graduated from Mt. Vernon High School in Fortville, Indiana.

On February 17th, 2015, Dawson was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the nation’s second highest award for valor. He earned this award while deployed to Afghanistan with the 28th EOD Company (Airborne).

During a mission, a fleeing enemy insurgent detonated an explosive killing himself and the team’s

dog.

Soon after, Dawson realized that there were IED’s surrounding him and his team.

According to the Army news website: “Despite being wounded by two separate explosions, Dawson halted the mission, disarmed the improvised explosive devices and aided in the evacuation of dead and wounded Soldiers. Navigating the chaotic situation in limited visibility for more than two hours, Dawson exposed himself to grave danger while locating three confirmed pressure plate IEDs and an additional six suspected devices, the award citation stated.”

Dawson’s other awards and recognition’s include:

Combat Action Badge, Senior Explosive Ordnance Disposal Badge, Parachutists Badge,Distinguished Service Cross, Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Iraq Campaign Ribbon with one campaign star, Afghanistan Campaign Ribbon with 2 campaign stars, Valorous Unit Award, and Meritorious Unit Citation.

Staff Sergeant Jeffrey Dawson went above the call of duty and is truly deserving of the 2017 American Hero Award.

Here We Grow Again!

It is officially spring! Springtime is a season of new life and of growth. In the spirit of the season, Trojan Labor is very pleased to announce several new offices opening in the coming months. We know that opening in these new communities will allow us to continue to be “the right people at the right time” for our customers. Be sure to be on the lookout for more information on these new offices which will be announced on this blog as well as on the official Trojan Labor Facebook page. Here is a list of the upcoming offices:

-Melbourne, FL:  March 27th

-San Antonio, TX: April 3rd

-Des Moines, IA: April 3rd

-Tarpon Springs, FL: Coming Soon!

-Stuart, FL: Coming Soon!

Higher Quest Foundation Update: Honduras Project

The Higher Quest Foundation (sponsored by Trojan Labor) builds fish farms in developing countries and trains the local staff in their operation and maintenance. For one of their projects they partnered with Global Brigades to build a farm in Honduras. So far the farm has been a huge success and harvested it’s first crop of fish late last summer. Here are some of the latest picture updates of the project:

 

Possible Changes in Healthcare Laws May Cause Problems for Multistate Employers

Some Republican lawmakers have submitted a bill that would be a replacement for the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). The proposed law would give states three options. The first option is they can keep Obamacare as it is right now. The second option is that they can implement the replacement healthcare solution that is laid out in the proposed bill. Finally, states can also choose to draw up their own healthcare reform as their third option.

The plan also keeps Obamacare’s ban on pre-existing conditions and coverage of dependents up to age 26 throughout the country.

This proposed plan could create compliance problems for multi state employers if different states have different health care laws being implemented. Some critics of the bill also say it would create “chaos” in the health insurance market.

Repealing and replacing Obamacare is not as easy as it sounds and it will be some time until there are any big changes that take affect. However, businesses should be ready for any changes that may be coming in the coming months and years.

2016-2017 Trojan Labor Scholarship-Warner University

We are pleased to announce the recipient of the 2016-17 Trojan Labor Scholarship at Warner University: Abbigail Slaughter-Crawford. Abby is a sophomore from Haines City, Florida. She is majoring in Agriculture Studies with a minor in Communication.  She is significantly involved with community service through the Collegiate FFA where she serves as Vice President as well as with Alpha Zeta.

Lightning Safety for Outdoor Workers

With severe thunderstorms threatening large parts of the southeastern United States this week, it is a good time to discuss ways for outdoor workers to stay safe when severe weather and lightning strikes.

According to OSHA, one of the first (and easiest) steps of lightning safety is to monitor all NOAA weather alerts and to stay indoors if a threat is imminent.

However, if you are caught outside as a storm approaches here are some steps to stay safe according to OSHA:

  • Lightning usually strikes the tallest object, make sure you are not the tallest object in the vicinity.
  • Avoid open areas such as sports fields and meadows
  • If no buildings or vehicles are nearby, seek shelter in low lying areas such a ditches or valleys
  • Stay far away from bodies of water. If you are in water, exit immediately.
  • Sheds, pavilions, and other non grounded buildings do not provide adequate protection from lightning

New E-Verify Law Coming into Effect in Tennessee

Starting on January first, employers in Tennessee with over 50 employees will be required to utilize E-Verify.

This requirements comes from a change to the TLEA, which is the Tennessee Lawful Employment Act.

Once January 1st rolls around, companies with less than 50 employees do not have to use E-Verify, but they are able to if they desire.

Penalties for TLEA violations are very high. They start at a $500 company fine and $500 per violation. For a repeat offender the fines can go up to a $2,500 company fine and $2,500 per violation.