Awards Donates $200,000 to Five Military Non-Profits

October 5, 2018

Marks $1.9 Million in Contributions since Launching Newman’s Own Awards in 1999

Today, Newman’s Own joined co-sponsors Fisher House Foundation and Military Times at the 19th 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, 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 Andrew Tilghman, Executive Editor of Military Times. The five winning organizations include Warrior Reunion FoundationCode PlatoonWV Health Right, Inc.Healing Warriors Program and Vets on Track Foundation, Inc.

Warrior Reunion Foundation received the highest honor, and a $50,000 award. Located in Cockeysville, Maryland, Warrior Reunion Foundation provides reunions that reconnect military veterans deployed to combat together, challenging stigma through shared experience while facilitating the development of peer support networks essential to success in like after military service.

“We are grateful to the men and women of our military, veterans, and their families for their commitment to protecting the freedoms and opportunities we enjoy as Americans,” said Bob Forrester, Co-Chairman of Newman’s Own, Inc. and President and CEO of Newman’s Own Foundation. “We’re proud to have participated for the past 19 years with the Military Times and Fisher House Foundation in recognizing so many outstanding organizations focused on helping our veterans and their families, and we’re especially proud to support this year’s award recipients.”

To date, the annual competition has recognized 179 programs with awards totaling $1,925,000.

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.

Just under 300 entries were submitted for the 2018 program.  Five judges evaluated each entry based on the organization’s impact to the respective communities, creativity and innovation. 


Judges for the 2018 competition were:


            Mrs. Ellyn Dunford                    Spouse of General Joseph Dunford, USMC

            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

 Unit Reunion Program

Warrior Reunion Foundation, Cockeysville, MD

Warrior Reunion Foundation supports combat veterans in overcoming the challenges of post-military transition by reconnecting those who served together overseas. We challenge stigma through shared experience, rebuilding essential peer support networks that enable our veterans to live with meaning, purpose and positive impact in their communities. In just over one year of operation Warrior Reunion Foundation has provided seven reunions to units of military veterans who deployed to combat together. During the course of these seven reunions we have served over 300 combat veterans, as well as multiple Gold Star families who attended reunions alongside those who served with their loved one. For more information, contact James Ferguson ( or visit 



$37,500 AWARD


Educating Our Veterans to Become Software Developers

Code Platoon, Chicago, IL

Based in Chicago, Illinois, Code Platoon provides software coding training to help local veterans and military spouses find meaningful careers as professional software developers. Each student is eligible to apply for scholarships or use their GI Bill benefits, making this career path affordable and attainable. The program consists of 8-12 students per class who spend 60-80 hours a week together for 14 weeks. Instruction is a carefully curated mix of lectures, advanced coding training in Python and JavaScript, and team projects, frequently culminating in a local paid internship. For more information, contact Rodrigo Levy ( or visit 


Veteran’s Dental Program

WV Health Right, Inc., Charleston, WV

 West Virginia Health Right, Inc. provides free dental care, including preventative cleanings, exams, fillings, extractions and dentures, to low-income West Virginia Veterans without dental coverage.  The program funded by this grant will utilize a mobile dental clinic that travels to 6 rural counties of the state and the onsite dental clinic at their main office to treat 500 Veterans in need. For more information, contact Angie Settle ( or visit 


Clinic Sessions

Healing Warriors Program, Fort Collins, CO 

Healing Warriors Program clinic opened in July 2013 and has provided over 11,000 non-opioid pain and trauma clinic sessions, treating over 1,200 service members and their spouses, partners and parents.  Many of the veterans we see at Healing Warriors Program clinic have been living in pain for so long that their sense of hope is worn down, placing many at risk for suicide.  By using therapies that support healing, relief from pain, improved sleep and focus, the service member is able to find restoration for their quality of life.  Our mission to provide non-narcotic, integrative treatment, is critical at a time when many veterans are transitioning from opioid pain management and need help with the burden of injury.

We are a Registered VA Vendor and a Guidestar Platinum Star participant charity. For more information, contact Ana Yelen ( or visit


Fresh Start Program

Vets on Track Foundation, Inc., Garrisonville, VA 

The Vets on Track Foundation furnishes homes for veterans and their families who have been placed into permanent housing from living on the streets or in a shelter.  From sofas, beds, dining room tables and chairs, to dishes, silverware and pictures for the wall, to throw pillows and blankets, our volunteers work to turn every house into a warm and loving home. Through our mission, we are able to complete the circle of support, which is needed to end veteran homelessness. For more information, contact Rick Ecker ( or visit