YPSILANTI, MI (November 7, 2022) —- Multi-time world championship winning drag racing team Kalitta Motorsports and long-time sponsor Clean Harbors will be recognizing the sacrifice and commitment of our brave servicemen and servicewomen on Veteran’s Day at the NHRA Auto Club Finals in Pomona, California. The Veterans Day Appreciation event will include tickets to the races on Friday, access to Kalitta Motorsports VIP hospitality, a welcome banner at Kalitta VIP hospitality, a custom engraved piston, and a gift bag for each of the veterans being honored. The goal of the Veteran’s Day Appreciation event is to honor 75 veterans from across all the branches of service with a day of thanks for their commitment to protecting our great country.
“This was an idea we have been talking about throughout the season and we are proud to be able to honor these service men and women at the races,” said Chad Head, Kalitta Motorsports General Manager. “Clean Harbors has been doing great things to support their veteran employees and we have many veterans across all the companies Connie Kalitta has founded that we want to celebrate.”
Earlier this year Kalitta Motorsports representatives and Clean Harbor executives began talking about how to honor veterans both inside and outside each of the companies. There are well over 500 veterans working throughout Kalitta Motorsports, Kalitta Air and Kalitta Charters with Clean Harbors employing nearly 1,000 veterans. The Clean Harbors veterans resource group has been active for many years in supporting the needs of their veteran employees and was instrumental in organizing this event.
To facilitate and improve the transition process Clean Harbors has partnered with FASTPORT whose mission is to help all members of our nation’s military community find great career opportunities with great employers. FASTPORT connects any Veteran, transitioning service member, member of the Guard and Reserve, or military spouses in need of employment across the country and three of the guests who will attend the NHRA Auto Club Finals highlight the importance of this program and Clean Harbors’ involvement. After 20 years in the Marine Corp LTC Daniel Whitley, AC/S G-7, MCIWEST-MCB Camp Pendleton, is retiring in 2023 and will be looking for apprentice programs to continue his civilian career. Brad Bently, the President of FASTPORT, will be in attendance along with Kevin Ridings, Executive Vice President, Transportation and Logistics, an Army Veteran who currently oversees Clean Harbors National Transportation and Logistics.
“We are excited to be hosting 75 veterans at the NHRA Auto Club Finals thanks to the generosity of Kalitta Motorsports,” said Buddy Judy, Clean Harbors Director of Marketing. “It is especially meaningful to have LTC Whitley, Brad Bently from FASTPORT and Kevin Ridings from Clean Harbors at the event because they represent a great example of the transitional opportunity Clean Harbors is so passionate about with our veterans and their family members from across all the branches of service. Our hope is we can help veterans take their skillsets from the military to civilian life as seamlessly and quickly as possible.”
During the event on Friday Kalitta Motorsports drivers Doug Kalitta, Shawn Langdon and J.R. Todd will be spending time with the veterans for autographs and photos. The team will also be highlighting the event with a special decal on all three race cars and the haulers. Qualifying for the NHRA Auto Club Finals will begin with two sessions 1:00 p.m. and 4:15 p.m. on Friday, November 11.