Pohl Group hosts first annual Veteran Teacher Appreciation Dinner


The Pohl Group honored military veteran teachers with a free dinner and recognition at the American Legion. Being a veteran-owned company that has done safety and security training for schools in Darke, Preble, Miami, and Montgomery counties since 2019, they recognize the effort put in by veteran teachers. 

“We’ve had a chance to interact with school systems and the educational environment, and we’ve been able to identify some of the root problems in today’s educational environment in terms of why kids are acting out, the underpinnings of kids who become violent and include things like active shooter attacks,” Mark Pohl, president and founder of The Pohl Group said. “Our training is to help schools to prevent those things from happening and, if they do happen, how to respond to it.” 

Since starting this, The Pohl Group has received a lot of support from the local schools. With the holiday season, they wanted to find a way to give back to the schools that have welcomed and worked as partners on these issues. 

“We talked amongst us and decided we wanted to reach out to the veteran community,” Pohl said. “We are a small veteran-owned business, and we wanted to reach out to the veteran community who serve in schools, hold an appreciation dinner, and recognize them for what we think are important characteristics of teachers in today’s environment.”

The Pohl Group recognized that veteran teachers are mentors, counselors, and, in some cases, family. They bring organization, discipline, leadership, and the ability to overcome problems to the students they teach. 

“We wanted to do something to help promote those ideas and those characteristics and to encourage veterans to continue on believing that they can help children who may need their help,” Pohl said. 

The Pohl Group partnered with Mission BBQ for this dinner. 

“Mission BBQ is a huge supporter of veterans and military causes and happened to have a personal relationship with someone at Mission BBQ who is a community outreach specialist,” Pohl said. “We put our heads together and said, hey, maybe we can work together on this.”

Their goal with this dinner was to get as many veteran teachers as possible together for a nice night of free dinner, socializing, and networking with other veteran teachers. Teachers came from Miami County Education Service Center, Darke County Education Service Center, Preble County Education Service Center, Piqua City Schools, Troy City Schools, Tipp City Schools, Upper Valley Career Center, Greenville City Schools, and Miami East Local Schools. 

The Pohl Group hopes this dinner gave veteran teachers the opportunity to get to know one another, share stories, and make connections. Connections that can help both professionally and personally. 

One teacher at the dinner shared his thoughts on the evening. 

“Honoring veterans in education. To go from the military to education isn’t a typical pathway. The military background gives good leaders, discipline, and good role model mentors for young kids. Mark Pohl felt the need to recognize veterans who are serving again in a different capacity.”

The Pohl Group plans to continue this dinner every year, with the hopes that the number of veteran teachers attending grows. 

“I’m an army veteran, my partner is an airforce veteran, he’s retired from the FBI, I’m retired from the Department of Defense, and I worked for the FBI for about 12 years,” Pohl said. “Through our civilian careers, after we served in the military, we found a mission that we thought was important, and that is to help protect the community against the epidemic of violence that we are seeing. In a similar way, we know that veterans that serve as school teachers have found another mission too, and we think that mission is very important, and we want to recognize them for working with kids.”