It started as a joke and got out of control -Paul Newman

Newman’s Own® Awards Donates $200,000 to Five Military Non-Profits at Pentagon Award Ceremony

Marks $1.5 Million in Contributions since Launching Newman’s Own Awards in 1999

WASHINGTON, DC (September 29, 2016) — Today, Newman’s Own joined co-sponsors Fisher House Foundation and Military Times at the 17th annual Newman’s Own Awards Ceremony at the Pentagon Hall of Heroes to honor five non-profit organizations for their innovative programs created to improve military quality of life.

The annual competition seeks to reward ingenuity for programs that benefit service men and women and their families. As the event commenced, General Joseph Dunford, 19th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, announced the recipients of the awards, totaling $200,000. He was joined in presenting the awards by Jeffrey Smith, Vice President of Operations of Newman’s Own, Inc.; Dave Coker, President of Fisher House Foundation; and Tony Lombardo, Executive Editor of Military Times. The five winning organizations include Give an Hour, FITSI Foundation, Dryhootch of America, Inc., Military Spouse JD Network Foundation and Project MEND.

Give an Hour received the highest honor, and a $50,000 award. Located in Bethesda, MD, Give an Hour, founded in 2005, has created a network of mental health professionals, who donate their time to meet the mental health needs of service members and families affected by the post-9/11 conflicts. To date, they have provided more than 200,000 hours of care and support to those in need.

“We are proud to support the organizations that help improve the quality of life of our military members,” said Mike McGrath, Chief Executive Officer of Newman’s Own, Inc. “Service members, veterans and their families often face unique obstacles as a result of their dedication to serving our nation, and we are committed to giving back to show our appreciation and gratitude.”

To date, the annual competition has recognized 169 programs with awards totaling $1,525,000.

As a long-time supporter of military non-profits, Newman’s Own carries on the legacy of Paul Newman, founder of Newman’s Own, who wanted to help make a difference in the lives of others. Paul, a Navy Veteran, served in the Pacific during World War II.  Over the years, Newman’s Own Awards has provided funding for organizations across the country, which have addressed veterans’ issues such as mental and physical health, housing, education, career development, entrepreneurship, family support.

Over 200 entries were submitted for the 2016 program.  Six judges evaluated each entry based on the organization’s impact to the respective communities, creativity and innovation.

Judges for the 2016 competition were:

Mrs. Ellyn Dunford                          Spouse of General Joseph Dunford, USMC

Mrs. Ricki Selva                                Spouse of General Paul Selva, USAF

Mrs. Tammy Fisher                         Trustee, Fisher House Foundation
Mrs. Suzie Schwartz                        Trustee, Fisher House Foundation

Mrs. Lynne Pace                               Trustee, Fisher House Foundation

Mr. Jeffrey Smith                             Vice President of Operations, Newman’s Own


Overall Winning Entry

$50,000 AWARD

 Mental Health Counseling

Give an Hour, Bethesda, MD

Give an Hour was founded in September 2005 by Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, a psychologist in the Washington, D.C., area, and has been instrumental in the development of the community-based approach to addressing the challenges that face our nation’s military community, having created a successful model for harnessing skill-based volunteers eager to offer their services. Thus far, the network of nearly 7,000 licensed mental health professionals has provided more than 200,000 hours of care and support to those in need.

For more information, contact David Sklar ( or visit


$37,500 AWARDS

Wounded Warrior Cyber Combat Academy

FITSI Foundation, Alexandria, VA

The mission of the Wounded Warrior Cyber Combat Academy (W2CCA) is to “To Build the Next Generation of Cyber Defenders by Cross-Training the League of Wounded Warriors to help Protect and Defend the Nation’s Information Systems.  The FITSI Foundation oversees the W2CCA to arm our wounded warriors with technical skills that supplement their existing dedication, patience, and devotion to duty, thereby strengthening national cyber defenses. For more information, contact Jim Wiggins ( or visit


Dryhootch Peer Support Program

Dryhootch of America, Inc., Milwaukee, WI

 Dryhootch is a non- profit organization, founded in 2008 by a Vietnam veteran who envisioned becoming a home-front battle buddy to the new generation of veterans, which materialized into a successful Peer Support Program, and is the cornerstone of Dryhootch. The Dryhootch Peer Support Program provides veterans and their families with opportunities to build camaraderie through individual and group peer support activities. Veterans and their families participate in social activities such as: outdoor and sporting events, family bonding days, holistic wellness activities, community days of service, and community reintegration events with other veterans and families who have walked in the same shoes. Through these experiences veterans are empowered as they confront common struggles related to reintegration such as: Post Traumatic Stress, Moral Injury, addiction, homelessness, unemployment, legal and financial concerns, and family relationship issues. For more information, contact Leah Lockett ( or visit


Military Spouse JD Network Foundation

Military Spouse JD Network Foundation, Alexandria, VA

 The Military Spouse JD Network is an international network that supports military spouses in the legal profession by advocating for licensing accommodations; educating the public about the challenges facing career-minded military spouses and their families; encouraging the hiring of military spouses; and providing a network connecting military spouse attorneys with each other and their supporters. The charitable arm of the organization is the Military Spouse JD Network Foundation. The Foundation supports the licensing initiative that has led to accommodations for military spouse attorneys in 21 jurisdictions. The Foundation also is home to Justice for Military Families, a pro bono program providing legal assistance to Gold Star families through a partnership with the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors. For more information, contact Eleanor Vuono ( or visit


Medical Equipment Reuse/AT for Veterans

Project MEND, San Antonio, TX

 Project MEND is committed to improving the quality of life for individuals living with disabilities and illness through the reuse and distribution of medical equipment and other assistive technology.  Texas has over 3.4 million people living with disabilities; the right equipment at the right time empowers them to be mobile, independent and experience improved quality of life. Our Veteran Program provides any person discharged from the armed forces, and their family members, with medical equipment and other assistive technologies medically necessary to enhance independence, self-sufficiency and mobility.  A services connected disability is not required nor is a disability rating issued by the VA.   For more information, contact Denise Bennett ( or visit


About Newman’s Own®, Inc.
Newman’s Own, Inc., founded by Paul Newman in 1982, offers great tasting, high quality food and beverage products, including salad dressings, pasta sauces, frozen pizza, salsa, frozen skillet meals, refrigerated lemonades, cookies, snacks and pet food. Newman’s Own Foundation continues Paul Newman’s commitment to use all royalties and profits that it receives from the sale of its food products for charitable purposes.  Over $475 million has been given to thousands of charities since 1982. For more information, visit

About Military Times
The Military Times digital platforms and print products are the trusted source for independent news and information for service members and their families. The military community relies on the Army Times, Marine Corps Times, Navy Times and Air Force Times for reporting on everything important to their lives, including: pay, benefits, finance, education, health care, recreational resources, retirement, promotions, product reviews, and entertainment. Military Times is published by Sightline Media Group. To learn more, visit
About Fisher House Foundation
Fisher House Foundation is best known for a network of comfort homes where military and Veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one is receiving treatment.  These homes are located at major military and VA medical centers nationwide, and in Europe, close to the medical center or hospital it serves. Fisher Houses have up to 21 suites, with private bedrooms and baths.  Families share a common kitchen, laundry facilities, a warm dining room and an inviting living room.  Fisher House Foundation ensures that there is never a lodging fee.  Since inception, the program has saved military and Veterans’ families an estimated $320 million in out of pocket costs for lodging and transportation.

Fisher House Foundation also operates the Hero Miles Program, using donated frequent flyer miles to bring family members to the bedside of injured service members as well as the Hotels for Heroes program using donated hotel points to allow family members to stay at hotels near medical centers without charge.  The Foundation also manages a grant program that supports other military charities and scholarship funds for military children, spouses and children of fallen and disabled Veterans.

Contact:  Kerri Childress, Fisher House Foundation                                                    

Contact: Kim Riccardi for Newman’s Own, Inc.                                                                                        

Contact: Christine Aquino for Military Times