Hampton, N.H. 9/5/2017
Dear Colleagues and Brand Partners,
Most collegiate institutions by now have heard of or are participating in Operation Hat Trick (OHT) – the first philanthropic co-brand program born in college. We are forever grateful for the support we have received from hundreds of universities that have helped to make OHT a very significant movement that benefits our service men and women at the grassroots level. OHT has grown rapidly in only four years to generate and disburse hundreds of thousands of dollars to support our service men and women and veterans. Our goal is to continue to grow our support.
OHT is unique in that it is not competitive with other military support organizations. With our focus on filling critical gaps in care for our wounded warriors, OHT actually seeks out and funds smaller organizations that are changing lives at the local level. In fact, we have proudly partnered with dozens of universities to identify worthy organizations in their own communities.
When we initially developed a national strategy for OHT, we were committed to helping our military members and vets while ensuring that our partner brands were protected and kept whole through our unique co-brand program. We believe we have been great stewards to our partner brands and together we have made a tremendously positive impact.
Many Americans express support for our military and vets, but not everyone converts those sentiments into action. That’s the beauty of OHT – supporting the military is as simple as making a purchase. Since launch, we have successfully inspired nearly a million consumers to make a “purchase with a purpose”. Love of university and love of our country is a powerful combination.
Since the very beginning, we thought OHT could be an opportunity for our co-brand partners to grow an incremental new niche in their licensing programs. Today, there is a wide variety of military camo and Americana options in the marketplace. Prior to OHT, camo in college (and the pro leagues) was limited to hunting camos and the presence of Americana was also very limited. OHT played a key role in driving what has now become a significant trend toward military camo and Americana theming on collegiate products. Our hope is that the presence of military camo and Americana theming in the marketplace will have meaning that goes beyond the symbolic, and that consumers by and large will know that their purchases of military camo/Americana include donations to military support organizations.
Some institutions have recognized OHT’s role in the growing military camo/Americana trend and have taken steps to protect OHT by not approving military camo and theming by non-OHT licensees. If we are all in agreement with meaningful support for our service men and women and vets, it makes sense that purchases of military camo and Americana themed products actually benefit them. After all, our service men and women and veterans made a promise to defend, and we believe we should all do our best to meet our promise to support.
Dot Sheehan, Founder
Operation Hat Trick