Business Owner & Freedom Fighter in one

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It is time to begin looking closer into a part of our economy and our society that has been forgotten and rarely highlighted for too long. For the past 18 months I have been involved in the birthing of a new non-profit organization. It wasn’t a smooth path, step by step, everything happening as one would hope or expect. It was more an on again – off again engagement.

Last week I accepted a driving role in the organization to help it collect funds utilizing modern methods as well as delivering the help it intents to provide to the business community. The full name of the organization is: “Citizen Soldier Business Recovery Foundation”, or CSBRF. The mission of the foundation is to help business owners in their time of need. These are not just any regular business owners who might have made a bad financial decision or failed in leading their company. These are….

Individuals who are business owners and freedom fighters in one person. How do you get to be these two things in one person, you ask? Well, first of all I hope we all agree that anybody serving in our military is fighting to protect and defend the freedoms we all enjoy every day. That makes all men and women in military uniform freedom fighters.

Some of them, actually about 55000, have served in the military on active duty for many years. When they retired or completed their commitment, they decided to remain available to serve our country. They signed up for the Reserves or National Guard. Up until 4 years ago, the current generation of these individuals could expect to train about 1 weekend per month and be ready to help when disasters strike, natural catastrophes require support, or in limited support roles for the military.

With the advent of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq that situation changed dramatically. As more and more active duty units were send to these wars, it became clear that the rotations could only be maintained when reserve and guard units would also get involved. The required directives were crafted and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld began to activate these units for combat duty.

Can you imagine going from being called a weekend warrior to being in the middle of a nasty war? Now, try to imagine you have served your duty in the military, signed up for the National Guard or Reserves, and began to develop your own business. After a few years you have employees, you have revenues and profits, you have products and services, and you have people who depend on your leadership.

Suddenly you receive a call, or letter, or both telling you to get ready for activation of your reserve or guard unit. You will go to a training camp immediately followed by deployment to Afghanistan or Iraq. For 9-15 months you will be away from home, away from your family, and away from your company.

That’s when you realize that you are a business owner and freedom fighter all in one person. The CSBRF foundation is using its funds to support the companies of these heroes. Dedicated consultants are dispatched to the companies of the citizen soldier business owners to help their organizations survive while they serve and protect the freedoms we all enjoy.

By helping these leaders keep their businesses alive, the foundation supports the local economy and maintains employment for those individuals working in these companies. All the support services of the foundation occur without cost to the citizen soldiers on deployment, or the company. The support can extent to post-deployment time as well, in case certain initiatives need to be completed. If you are gone from your own company for a year, it takes a little time to get back on track, get everything back under your control while you are trying to cope with all the impressions and burdens that you were exposed to while fighting a war.

Regardless of political views about the current wars, it should be clear that these citizen soldier business owners deserve our support to keep their companies afloat, especially in these trying economic times.

We are working on creating an easy, online way to give donations to the CSBR Foundation, so the team and I can help the companies and the business owner freedom fighters survive.

Stay tuned. I’ll report soon about the developments and how to donate and support these unknown heroes. If you like to now more or donate by check contact us at

420 Dogwood Drive,

Buellton, CA 93427,

Email: [email protected]

Axel Meierhoefer is an experienced performance coach, author, educator, consultant, and the founder of Axel Meierhoefer Consulting LLC (AMC LLC). His motto is Helping others help themselves achieve success.