Until your good name is besmirched. Homes for Heroes in the past has taken people leveraging our brand as flattery. We often ask if they would like to continue to use our good name by joining forces with us, and if they do not want to we are okay with that decision also. But recently something came up that does need to be addressed. We will let the Morris Daily Herald explain it.
Illinois allegation hurts ‘real' Heroes
Minneapolis, Minn-When Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan took enforcement action against the Minooka, Ill.-based Homes for Heroes Inc., says Brad Oosterhuis, it was not a reflection on the "real" Home for Heroes.
"Our organization has been serving heroes continuously since 2002, and we have a serious concern that the publication of the charge against the Homes for Heroes company in Illinois could seriously tarnish our good name," said Oosterhuis, executive director of Home for Heroes, in a recent e-mail.
Since the founding of Homes for Heroes, a press release from the Minnesota-based organization notes, many organizations have tried to duplicate the Homes for Heroes model and have illegally used the trademarked name. The widespread recognition of the Homes for Heroes name across the nation has caused many groups to attempt to leverage this successful brand to their advantage.
"While Homes for Heroes encourages all companies to support our heroes, it is illegal for them to use the Homes for Heroes trademarked name," said Ruth Johnson, president of Homes for Heroes. "It is especially disturbing when these organizations are providing false claims and tarnishing the good name and work that Homes for Heroes is doing."
In an effort to advance its cause and protect its name, Home for Heroes, which is now in its seventh year of operation, recently created the Homes for Heroes Foundation.
Due to its highly recognized name and brand nationally, the press release notes, Homes for Heroes became inundated with calls that were predominantly from severely wounded military personnel asking for assistance.
"These requests went far beyond the scope of our business model and ability to help," Johnson said. The shareholders of Homes for Heroes saw a need for a charitable organization that would have a similar vision to its own. After much thought and the desire to help, they formed the Homes for Heroes Foundation.
The foundation will endeavor to provide or coordinate financial assistance to the heroes of our nation, such as military, police officers, firefighters and first responders who are in need.
Meanwhile, with the busy spring housing market well under way, Homes for Heroes affiliates will continue to "give back" by providing significant savings to its local heroes, particularly military personnel, police officers, firefighters, teachers, health care workers and others who serve our country and communities everyday.
If you would like more information about the Homes for Heroes, please call Ruth Johnson at (866) 443-7637 or log onto www.homesforheroes.com or www.homesforheroesfoundation.org.
In her enforcement action against the Minooka-based company using the Homes for Heroes name, Attorney General Lisa Madigan alleged the company and its owner, Patrick Gleason of Minooka, conducted a fraudulent charitable solicitation campaign and engaged in deceptive practices by falsely representing the local Homes for Heroes is "a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization."
Gleason has gone on record calling the IAG's action "absurd."
"This is absurd," he said. We filed for our corporation and status a long time ago. The IRS asked us to put it on good paper, not wallpaper. It was done, it was all signed and sent in again. So, they're trying to smear our names with improprieties ..."