Senator Jim Tedisco (R,C-Glenville) inducted into the New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame, Clifton Park resident Emil Baker, who is a small business owner, and a decorated U.S. Army Vietnam War combat veteran.
“Emil Baker is a real American hero who served our country during the Vietnam War with honor and courage and then came home, became a very successful businessman and has been a strong and effective voice for our veterans and wounded warriors to have the help and support they need to heal and find work. The Vietnam War was not a popular conflict at the time and those that served did not get the parades, thanks and grateful recognition they deserved. While good people can disagree on the righteousness of certain armed conflicts, we all should agree that those brave Americans who answer our country’s call to service deserve our love, support, appreciation and respect. The heartfelt recognition for the service of all those who fought in Vietnam, like Emil Baker, is long overdue and I am so thrilled to induct him into the New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame,” said Senator Jim Tedisco.
Emil Baker of Clifton Park is a former Specialist E4 in the U.S. Army who served in combat during the Vietnam War. While in Vietnam, Baker was given a combat acting promotion to the rank of Sergeant and became the head of his unit, a rank he held for the remainder of his time in Vietnam. At the end of his tour in Vietnam, Baker was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for meritorious service and the New York State Conspicuous Service Cross. Baker is a service-disabled veteran who was affected by Agent Orange.
Following his active duty military service, Baker worked for 20 years for New York Telephone/Bell Atlantic, retiring as Vice President and General Manager for New York and Vermont. Baker then opened a paging business that grew to 30 cell phone stores in three states which he sold in 2016. Emil also opened the Big Moose Deli and Country Store in Hoosick Falls, which employs veterans and is the only OGS-certified Service and Disabled-owned deli and country store in New York State.
Emil is a dedicated volunteer and outspoken advocate for veterans causes and issues. He has served as a U.S. Small Business Administration Score Counselor for five years helping veterans pursue their dreams and open their own small businesses. He has served as the Vice President of the McNulty Center at the Watervliet Arsenal, the area lead for the Red Cross Service to the Armed Services Program, and as a mentor for the Saratoga County Peer Connection Program and Saratoga County Incarcerated Veterans Program.
Over the past five years, Emil Baker has served as area chairman and New York State Director of Employer Outreach with the U.S. Department of Defense Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve program to help veterans find gainful employment and work with employers who hire members of the National Guard and Reserve and support their efforts to be citizen warriors for our country.
Mr. Baker was a strong advocate for and testified before the New York State Senate Veterans Affairs Committee in 2018 in support of legislation which passed the Senate and Assembly and was signed into law by the Governor to ensure more veterans services information are accessible and available online.
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