About Us

Founding Board

Kevin and Audra, Craig and Michelle. Two brothers and their wives. Two ride and two don’t. All four solid Wisconsinites. Parents to a collective mass of five amazing people. One lawyer, one nurse, one government employee, one communications consultant. Not one of us served, but all are grateful to those who have protected our freedoms, and continue to do so, on our behalf. So how did we get here? Thanks Kevin!

Looking to combine two long time passions of Veteran support and motorcycle riding, Kevin had been looking for a way to make a large, impactful difference in a small number of lives rather than a slight difference across many. In the fall of 2014, he read an article on the therapeutic benefits of motorcycle ownership amongst Veterans with PTSD, particularly when faced with different challenges upon returning to civilian life, and the healing connection made immediate sense. After realizing nobody else in the nation offered this alternative therapy, Hogs For Heroes came to life with a small family vision and our nonprofit designation in 2014.

Knowing our limited volunteer work would be done on the side of jobs and family life, we focused on our Wisconsin Veterans and set a goal of gifting one Harley a year to change one life a year. We raised our first dollar in the Spring of 2015 and, right on plan, gifted our first Harley on May 4, 2016. We consider that very first gifting to be “our birthday”; and every year since, with amazing Supporters at our side, our grassroots effort has grown to positively impact more Veterans, as well as those who support them, than we ever imagined.

We work in conjunction with everyday citizens, organizations, and businesses who seek to improve the lives of our Veterans; and our mission’s impact greatly depends on your generosity to support our reach. We appreciate you learning more about us and hope you join us on our journey to positively change, if not save, the lives of our injured and struggling Veterans.

Our Advisory Board

Enlisting volunteer members of our community, an Advisory Board collaborates with and provides direction to our Founding Board in three primary areas:

  1. Participate in decision making as it pertains to the selection of a Veteran candidate in the gifting process.
  2. Advise on any operational or strategic matters brought to them by the Founding Board.
  3. Serve as community liaisons, fundraising advocates and organizational ambassadors for Hogs For Heroes throughout the state of Wisconsin.
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We Gift More Than Just a Motorcycle

Riding is an alternative therapy and our gifts are the tools by which one regains its healing benefits. The Harleys are not awards for service achievements, popularity-based or simply thank-you gifts but are, instead, meant to help change, if not save, struggling and at-risk Veteran’s lives by returning the ability to ride.  While our goal is to gift one bike a year, since our first gifting in May 2016, 41 injured Wisconsin Veteran riders have now regained riding in their lives.  This May we started our eighth year of gifting Harleys and, with your support, plan to put another NINE Veterans back on the road during our 2024 riding season.

FOLLOW US & SHARE US on Facebook— this is how we communicate most news.
The more others know of our mission and opportunities, the faster we can make our vision a healing reality for others.

LATEST NEWS

HERE COMES #44: Army Veteran Justin Silkey of Greenfield, WI, has pursued a life of service, military and law enforcement, over the last 15 years: commitments that have given him both joy and true heartache. On a one year deployment to Iraq, Justin lost two Brothers to IEDs in the truck he was supposed to be in. After separating he returned, quickly spiraled into depression and then worked hard to move through the mental and physical pain his experience left him with. Fulfilling a lifelong dream, Justin joined the Milwaukee Police Department. In 2023 he lost two close police Brothers, reopening wounds he worked hard to heal from years ago. Justin has used riding to cope but his back can no longer tolerate its painful rider position; and after being financially ruined in divorce, he can’t take on a payment for its replacement. And so, he rides in pain. He rode as much as he could last summer, but decided to sell his bike this season. Hogs For Heroes believed we could help keep Justing on the great path he’s forged by putting him on a bike that supports the healing he needs and the camaraderie he thrives on. Read more about Justin here.

You can find our 44th Presentation of Keys flier on June 2, 2024 by clicking here.

And better yet, join us for the entire day of fun and fundraising! Click here to register for the Sloppy Joes Benefit Ride & Smoke On The Water’s Fest for Hogs For Heroes! Live music at ride’s end by the Milwaukee Tool Shed Band!

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WE MADE IT A DOUBLE! On May 11 we put Army Veteran Joshua Perkins of Suring, WI #42 on the road with a beautiful 2021 Ultra Limited to move himself, and his wife, on the long trips they’ve dreamed of. And standing right next to him was Recipient #43, Air Force Veteran Scott Williams of Three Lakes, WI, who, upon test riding his love at first sight, a brand new 2022 Heritage Softail Classic, said, “it felt like coming home”. Read each Recipient’s story of service, struggle and strength by scrolling below to their VETERAN BUTTONS #42 & #43.

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LEARN ABOUT PAST RECIPIENTS! Miss the stories of our past Recipients?  Catch them below by simply clicking on the Veteran’s name button.

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CATCH OUR LATEST NEWSLETTER!  Find out the latest happenings and updates in our most recent Hogs for Heroes newsletter.  Read it here!

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UNBELIEVABLE NEWS:  Fox News and their Fox & Friends First morning program flew a crew out, with Anchor Todd Piro, to interview our Hogs For Heroes family and recipients as we handed over our 18th set of keys to Marine Veteran Rick Erickson on May 23, 2021.  National attention?  Us?  UNBELIEVABLE!  Take a few minutes to watch this compassionate production on our mission’s efforts and impact by clicking here.

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SUPER COOL NEWS: Once again, our Recipients came up with a way to express their appreciation for the healing gifts you made possible in their lives. In addition to the decals they previously made, they recently chose to have license plates that designate their gifting number for those who want them. Watch for WI motorcycle plates on the road that read H4H 1-31 (i.e. H4H 6), with hopefully more numbers to come. And please note, Hogs For Heroes does not ask Recipients to tag their beautiful bikes (or themselves) in any way. They choose to do it.

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THE “THIS JUST DOESN’T GET OLD” NEWS: In November 2019, our Founding Family was surprised by a party our Recipients, their spouses and our Board members threw to honor us. We still choke up over this. NBC15 Madison was on hand to capture the surprise moment and tell us our nonprofit had been selected for their regional “Making A Difference” Award! This beautiful piece was created and narrated by NBC News Anchor John Stofflet and his skilled team, and features our first recipient, Sun Prairie Marine Scott Kruchten. And the cherry on top… it won a coveted Edward J. Muir journalism award in 2020.  Catch the video here.

Application & Selection Process

In advance of Wisconsin’s riding season, and once we have raised enough funds to determine how many Harleys we can purchase, we will open our application process. Only during that time can Wisconsin Veterans meeting our application criteria either apply themselves or be “nominated” with the involvement of another. Applicants must first meet the following criteria for application consideration by our Advisory Board:

Each time we are ready to accept applications, the below links will be activated for access and printing of the required components. We will share the news and specific time frames. Our Advisory Board will then meet, review qualified applications and determine our next Recipient.

Selecting one Veteran from the many deserving applications is the most difficult part of the work we do; and yet, the most exciting and rewarding. We will notify our selected candidate, work with a local dealership and, with an allotted budget, allow the Veteran to choose the Harley best suited for their needs. We will honor our Veteran by sharing their story and inviting Supporters to a public gifting ceremony during which we will introduce our Recipient and present the keys to the Harley selected. Details can be found in our “Application Process” PDF below.

Ways to Get Involved

Donate…

It is our mission to gift a Harley-Davidson motorcycle for a deserving Wisconsin hero. We are humbled by the donations of our supporters; your generosity makes this vision a reality. You can make a tax-deductible donation here.

Help Raise Money on Your Own…

Because we are a small grassroots organization, we depend on our supporters to spread the word to raise awareness and funds. Consider hosting a third-party event and share your proceeds with Hogs for Heroes.  In the past year, the amount of third-party fundraising events has been incredible, with businesses, clubs and veteran’s groups sending us donations from sponsored rides, golf outings and events. The list of ideas can be just as creative as you wish: club cook-outs, motorcycle rides, garage sales, golf outings, chili cook-offs, bowling events, bake sales, car washes, brat stands, cafeteria change collections, restaurant dining for causes…The list goes on.  We’d love to post your group’s efforts on our site to help promote the event and your business.

Spread the Word…

Like us, tweet us, post us, copy us, forward us, link us, blast us and just plain talk us up…the more others know what we are doing, the faster we can make the vision happen for our Veterans.

Display Our Brochures…

Have a business that is likely to interact with Veterans, loyal Americans or motorcycle enthusiasts? We would be happy to send you some brochures to display.

Make an In-Kind Donation…

Goods and services allow us to greatly enhance our fundraising and/or advertising possibilities and reduce our operational costs. Large items for raffles, food or drinks for events, printing services or event hosting capabilities—- the list goes on for us and gives you a great tax break along with a marketing presence.

Volunteer Your Time…

It’s hard for us to get around the entire state, that’s where social media and the generosity of others comes into play. Consider sharing your talents, manning a booth, talking to your local community groups, or reaching out to those who may be interested on our behalf.

Invite Us In…

Have a community event or festival coming up that you think would embrace our mission? Have a business, employer or a club that is looking for their next benefactor? Consider inviting us in and providing us with a little space and time on your agenda.

Have Another Idea?

Just contact us – we’d love to hear from you and help make your plan happen!

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Our Supporters