From staff reports

Service members have always downed a lot of coffee. But most don’t drink enough to earn a plaque.

“I was graciously honored with a plaque from my Marines that says ‘Grind, The Coffee Lover,'” said Tom Tice, a retired master sergeant who is now a recruiting manager at Starbucks focused on military talent acquisition. “They signed it and presented it to me as a going-away gift.”

“Years later, I hung it on a wall in my first office space at our Kent Flexible Plant near Seattle, Washington. It reminds me what coffee means to us. For more than a century, the coffee culture has been part of our military.”

Now, a major player in that coffee culture is giving back. This Nov. 1-11, Starbucks is donating $5 for each Veterans Starbucks card purchased at participating stores or at to the USO Transition 360 Alliance. Starbucks will also make a matching donation of Starbucks VIA Instant to the USO for every Starbucks VIA Instant purchase made at during that timeframe.

The USO Transition 360 Alliance was created to help service members and their families successfully shift back into civilian life when their service ends. The alliance – which includes USO partners Hire Heroes USA, Stronger Families, RP/6 and The Comfort Crew for Military Kids – forms a comprehensive menu of programming for everyone from new and pending veterans seeking new careers to young children from military families facing yet another move.

“I’m really excited about the opportunity for Transition 360,” Tice said. “As a Marine, I frequently utilized the USOs services over the years for entertainment and connecting in the desert or coming home at an airport. But now this venture into employment really brings a new value to what the USO is doing for service members and their families.”