Celebrating Veteran Owned Businesses
We Love Veteran Owned Businesses!
On this Veterans Day, we honor the sacrifices made for us by our nation’s military and veteran communities. One special way to do this is to highlight and support our America’s veteran owned businesses.
Many service members enter the business arena after leaving the service. Instead of working for someone else’s business, they start their own and create jobs, bring value to their communities, and make an impact on the world around them.
Join us in celebrating and supporting these veteran owned and operated businesses.
Featured Veteran Owned Businesses
“A veteran-owned and -founded independent coffee shop with two locations in Central Pennsylvania. We ship coffee and unique gifts across the country and to APO/FPO/DPO addresses. Visit us in Jonestown and Annville, PA!”
We believe in doing the right thing.
Swatara Coffee Co. is dedicated to its neighbors and the community that supports them. They strive to strengthen those communities by sourcing everything they can from local farms and businesses.
Additionally, Swatara Coffee Co. remains “as environmentally friendly and eco-conscious as possible”.
Their focus on the community doesn’t stop at supporting other farms and businesses in the area. Swatara Coffee also partners with local schools and artists to strengthen their neighborhoods.
Check out Swatara Coffee Co. and their fine selection of coffees and gifts!
“Our mission is to manufacture the highest quality tools for people whose lives depend on the tools they carry. We are US Veteran owned and operated. We strive to manufacture with exacting tolerances using only the very best materials. Our professional line of products are all made here in the USA with US sourced materials.
“We also offer a value added line of lower cost products manufactured outside the US to give most anyone the chance to own a piece of the Skallywag Tactical line of tools. These tools undergo our precise inspection process and every aspect of manufacture is scrutinized.
“Our goal is to give the very best customer service to our valued customers and work with precision and integrity. Owning a piece of our labor does not just make you a customer, it makes you part of the family.”
I absolutely love browsing Skallywag’s website. My next purchase will definitely be the Skallywag Full Kitchen Knife Set, which also comes with an engraved wooden magnetic counter board for storage.
If you’re in the market for blades or swag, then check out Skallywag Tactical LLC to get in on the action.
More Great Veteran Owned Businesses
Energy drinks. They’re one of the most consumed products in the military. However, not all energy drinks are created equal, and some of them are just plain bad for you.
That’s why Kill Cliff exists. Todd Ehrlich, former Navy SEAL and founder of Kill Cliff, was on the hunt for something he liked more than water. With his former buddies in mind, Todd wanted to create something that was the best for them, and something that embodied the grit and resilience of a Navy SEAL.
Kill Cliff drinks are made with 100% natural caffeine, derived from green tea. There’s no sugar and low calories.
Whether it’s their signature Ignite energy drink, the rejuvenating Recovery blends, or their chill CBD drinks, Kill Cliff has something for everyone. Also, don’t miss their newest release, the Kill Cliff Octane Killer Cliffsicle!
This veteran owned company was founded by Charlie Moyer, and they specialize in products for men’s facial hair. They carry everything from beard oils, butters, blams, waxes, and washes. Pretty much everything one needs to tame the mane.
Additionally, BBC offers mustache wax, deodorant, body washes, and all the gear you need for grooming.
For you or your beard-wearing family, you’re sure to find something great.
Are you ready for Next Level Toothpaste?
That’s exactly how Roger Gindlesperger, a 20-year Army veteran, and his wife Mary describe their company’s products.
“Grind Toothpaste was designed around a problem… Many dentists openly recommend against charcoal toothpaste due to abrasion concerns and in some cases a lack of fluoride for cavity protection.”
This veteran-owned family business tackled the abrasion and cavity-fighting problems head on. Grind’s gentle toothpaste whitens teeth, strengthens enamel, and fights cavities. Additionally, it hosts anti-plaque, antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties.
I’ve been using Grind’s toothpaste for over six months, and I am more than pleased with the results. Check out this revolutionary approach to toothpaste.
Founded by veteran Army Infantryman, Jason Murff, GYAO specializes in providing every fathomable way of seasoning your meat.
With everything from special military-themed seasonings, rubs, condiments, sauces, and salts, GYAO is a powder keg of flavors for all your grilling needs. My favorite is the Gunpowder Steak & Brisket Seasoning.
In addition to their special seasoning blends, Grill Your Ass Off offers utensils like instant-read thermometers, a book of recipes, Gourmet Duck Fat spray, and various meat temperature and timing charts.
Want some Swag with their name and logo? Don’t worry. They also sell shirts, hoodies, and other grilling gear.
Check out Grill Your Ass Off and stock up for your next meat adventure!
This veteran-owned company was founded by Jason and Emily McCarthy, and their goal was to “build a rucksack with life or death quality standards that would thrive in Baghdad and NYC”.
I would say they have succeeded. But GoRuck is more than just a company that sells awesome packs, equipment, footwear, and apparel. They created a community that revolves around a fantastic training regimen.
When you buy and use GoRuck gear, you can join the Official GoRuck Club and take part in numerous annual events around the country. There are even daily workouts that are simple and scalable to all abilities. They can be done anywhere and anytime.
If you’re looking for great gear to use with great company and to get in great shape, then GoRuck is the way to go.
“It’s much more than getting dressed everyday. It’s about being proud of who you are, what you wear, and how you walk through life. We are relentlessly patriotic. We hold no punches, we don’t apologize for our love of country. We are America’s next Greatest Generation.”
— Nine Line Apparel
With an opening line like that, it’s hard not to love this company!
This veteran-owned business was “founded by Patriots for Patriots” in 2012. Headquartered out of Savannah, Georgia, Nine Line Apparel offers clothing lines for men, women, and youth.
With everything from t-shirts, outerwear, and headgear, all emblazoned with their own freedom-loving messages, there is quite literally something for everyone. Not to mention that they have an ever-expanding line of accessories and drinkware.
There are some great veteran-owned clothing lines out there, and Nine Line Apparel is one of my favorites. All of my Nine Line shirts are made in the USA of extremely soft 100% cotton.
Check out Nine Line Apparel for some great gift ideas this holiday season!
Bison Union is an apparel company founded by a former Green Beret, and it is based out of Sheridan, Wyoming.
Their mission is “to make quality apparel for real, hard working people.”
What sets Bison Union Co. apart from other clothing companies is their leather accessories and belt buckles. They source these USA-made products through other small business owners who are also veterans, and that’s just awesome.
If you want durable products that will work as hard as you do, then check out Bison Union Co.!
“Founded in 2014, Thirty Seconds Out is a team of independent thinkers motivated to improve ourselves and those around us. Military roots and an appetite for adventure are what drive our mindset and our mission.”
30 Seconds Out is another veteran-owned company that captures the American warrior spirit. Founded by a retired Navy SEAL and headquartered in Idaho, 30 Seconds Out hosts their unique and patriotic messages on t-shirts, hats, flags, patches, and stickers.
But what does the name 30 Seconds Out mean? Great question!
“Originating in the military, it’s usually the last time signal you get before getting to the objective. It’s when the endorphins kick in…”
To read more about the meaning and to browse their great products, check out their website.
Have you ever held a bar of soap shaped like a grenade? I have, and there’s a great veteran-owned business that makes them!
The K Bar Soap Company was founded by Marine Corps veterans to bring “an all-natural grenade of showering freedom” that surpasses all of the mainstream bar soaps that are out there.
Each blend of all-natural ingredients comes with a unique scent and a motivating name. Some of the best-sellers are “Napalm in the AM”, “High Speed Low Drag”, and “Chest Candy”.
Although, my absolute, hands-down favorite is “Whiskey & Bad Decisions”. Besides being the first grenade bar I tried, something about the name and aroma resonated with me!
You can buy these grenade soaps individually, or in packs of four or six. K Bar also offers other hygiene products like cologne, hair pomade, and lip balm.
Whether you need a gift for the veteran in your life, or if you’re a veteran who wants to chuck grenades in the shower, you’ve gotta head over to K Bar Soap’s website and get your gear.
“Black Rifle Coffee Company is a veteran-owned coffee company serving premium coffee to people who love America. We develop our explosive roast profiles with the same mission focus we learned as military members serving this great country and are committed to supporting veterans, law enforcement, and first responders.”
Black Rifle Coffee Company was the first veteran-owned business I discovered when I decided to support as many veteran businesses as I possibly could. Not only does BRCC release phenomenal media, but they make some of the best coffee I’ve ever had.
You can get your BRCC coffee in so many different ways: whole bean, ground, instant, k-cups, and even in single-serve tea bags for coffee! One of our seasonal favorites is the Combat Cocoa Canister, which is the most freedom-loving cocoa you can drink this winter.
In addition to the coffee itself, BRCC offers a plethora of mugs, brewing gear, grinders, and thermoses. The BRCC Grenade Mugs are always a hit as gifts.
If you love America and great coffee, BRCC has what you need.
Three Rivers Coffee Company is a service-disabled veteran owned and operated small-batch coffee roasting company. Lorena and Chris Richie started the Three Rivers Coffee Company in 2017 after moving to Waxahachie, TX from Alaska. The name “Three Rivers” honors Alaska, a place very dear to them.
Battle Bars is a veteran owned and operated company. They sell premium protein snack bars that are hand-crafted by combat veterans. Alex Witt, Ian Sparks, and Colin Sparks co-own the company. You can build your own box through their website, and order the exact bars that you want.
Rumi Spice offers the highest quality and authentic spices. The company was founded by a team of military veterans who served in Afghanistan with the US Army. During their time there they got to know the amazing spices that grew in the region. They were able to create a modern-day spice route to connect farmers to the US market.
Teak & Twine is a one-stop shop for all things gifting. Started by veteran Torrance Hart in 2015 after serving eight years in the U.S. Air Force, Teak & Twine offers curated gift boxes, customer and corporate gifting, as well as the ability to design your own.
Doc Spartan is a veteran owned retailer of Combat Ready Ointment, deodorant, soap and scrubs, and more. Their signature product is their Combat Ready Ointment. Doc Spartan was originally founded to help people heal their wounds with natural ingredients.
Naturally London is a health and wellness brand that transforms the way you care for your hands and feet. The company is a Black owned, Women owned, Veteran owned business. Owner Chrissy Cabrera served in the U.S. Air Force.
Colleges and Universities Founded/Owned by Veterans
The John Patrick University of Health and Applied Sciences is a military friendly university and was founded by veteran, Brent D. Murphy, MS, MBA, DABR. He served in the 25th Infantry Division. The University offers the School of Medical Imaging Sciences, the School of Physics and Radiological Sciences, the School of Business and Informatics, and the School of Integrative and Functional Medicine. The John Patrick University of Health and Applied Sciences is an online accelerated 16-month private university located in South Bend, IN. They offer associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and certificate degree programs.
Claremont McKenna College is a military friendly university. The college was founded as Claremont Men’s College in 1946. Many of its first students were World War II veterans attending college on the G.I. Bill. Government, Mathematical Sciences, Philosophy, Religious Studies, History, Military Science and Leadership, Physical Education and Intercollegiate Athletics, the Robert Day School of Economics and Finance, Literature, Modern Languages and Literatures, Psychological Science, and W.M. Keck Science Department are all found at Claremont McKenna College. The school is a four-year private university located in Claremont, CA. They offer bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
Veteran Founded/Owned Staffing and Recruiting Agencies
Freedom Makers is a staffing agency that provides remote administrative assistance to businesses all over the world. They put people in jobs in these areas:
- Virtual Executive Assistant
- Social Media Marketing Assistant
- Data Entry Assistant
- Calendar & Email Management
- Operations Assistant
- Client Intake & Care Assistant
- Workflows and Systems Setup
Freedom Makers was founded by Laura Renner, who is a member of the U.S. Air Force Reserve.
Hirepurpose is a community that focuses on connecting veteran job seekers with employers who want to hire veterans. They place people in these types of jobs:
- Customer Service
- Field Operations
- Fleet Services
- Human Resources
- Supply Chain
Hirepurpose was founded in 2011 by Marine veteran, Zach Iscol.
Happy Veterans Day!
There are thousands of veteran owned businesses in America. While there’s not enough money in the budget for me to list them all, I encourage you to support your local small businesses, especially those owned and operated by veterans.
We are honored by the sacrifices made by America’s veterans. Thank you for your service!
(Image courtesy of Zoran Orcik via Shutterstock)
About the author
Robert Haynes is a retired Army infantryman who has a squad of kids and is married to an active duty Soldier. He is a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, who spent his last few years in the Army as a Drill Sergeant. He is now a full-time dad, freelance writer, and out-of-work comedian.