U.S. veterans and military spouses have given more than most for our country's freedom, and many of them continue to give back long after they've served. Check out these five companies created by entrepreneurial veterans and military spouses—and learn how they are still giving back.
R.Riveter was founded on the American ideal that opportunity and innovation, when combined with determination, will create positive impact. The company provides mobile, flexible income to military spouses as they move across the country every two to three years in support of their service member. The brand pillars are female empowerment, military family support, and made in the U.S.A. On each bag you’ll see a signature yellow support tag—an ode to military cause ribbons, hand-dyed by a remote riveter. Each high-quality bag is named after a woman in history who made an impact and changed the world. Parts and pieces are made remotely across the country by independent military spouses. Check out the dozens of incredible designs here, which now includes a holiday collection.
Unique Wedding Rings for Men
If you are practicing the words, "I do!" for your upcoming nuptials, check out these wedding bands for men made by Alpine Rings, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based company founded by a U.S. combat veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. The company opened its doors in 2018 on the idea that men deserved better options and a break from traditional boring wedding bands. Four years later, they've grown into a leader in the wedding ring industry, never having lost sight of its customers who have made their journey possible. The company also works with Brides Across America, a non-profit group that serves underprivileged military and first responders by covering wedding expenses and providing donated jewelry and other wedding items. See all of their unique designs at AlpineRings.com.
Charlie Madison Jewelry
The company name is nod to family ties—the founder’s two daughters—which honors their belief that life is lived in the everyday moments with those you call family, whether it’s the family you were born into or the ones you choose along the way. From the website: “Military families, especially, understand how essential this is, as we weave together a new ‘family’ with every move from one duty station to the next. Our meaningful jewelry unites you with family and friends near and far, reassures you that you’re not alone during the uncertainties of military life, and helps you share sentimental gifts with the ‘family’ who have encouraged you throughout your journey.” You can find a piece specific to your branch of the military and so much more. The company also collaborates with numerous non-profits to help further their causes. Check out the incredible array of beautiful items at charliemadisonoriginals.com.
A former military spouse is the creator and nomad behind Unique Pl8z, whose mission was to create a gift for someone special. That gift needed to reflect all the wonderful times they had spent laughing, dreaming and traveling together. Out of that vision came a sign using license plates from states they had traveled, and from that one gift, Unique Pl8z was born. The company has evolved over the years, and now it is so much more than just license plate art. It is a small business on a mission to empower and encourage U.S. beterans and military spouses through employment. To see the hundred of colorful unique pieces of art—or to order your own custom design—go to uniquepl8z.com.
K9 Salute Dog Treats
Last but never least is a company whose mission is to honor and give back to K9 heroes. K9 Salute was founded in 2016 by Jessica Harris, a retired Combat Medic from the Washington Army National Guard, as a way to honor and remember our nation's K-9 heroes that serve in all capacities (military, law enforcement, fire, search & rescue, and the many service dogs that assist people in day-to-day life). K9 Salute was created as a small way to honor these heroic dogs and to give back to the veteran and police K9 communities. The company donates and raises funds to help veterans get service dogs, and to help police departments get protective vests and necessary medical equipment for their K-9s. The company is currently offering a 20 percent discount (through Veterans Day weekend). Military members, veterans and First Responders can save 25 percent with a GovX ID account. To see the yummy treats that await your faithful friend, go to K9Salute.com.