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BNSF Railway Co. recently received the 2013 "Best of the Best" Award from U.S. Veterans Magazine. The award reflects the Class I's rating as one of the nation's top veteran-friendly companies.BNSF's recruiters attend national career fairs and local transition assistance classes on military bases to ensure separating military members are aware of opportunities at the railroad, the railroad's officials said in an item posted on the "BNSF News" web page. The Class I also has increased its military recruiting staff to expand recruiting efforts and further increase the percentage of military hires, they said.Currently, military veterans account for 26 percent of BNSF's new hires. Since 2005, the railroad has hired more than 6,000 veterans; an additional 5,000 are expected to be hired in the next five years."We earned the award largely because of the value we place on veterans and the qualities they bring to BNSF, such as a great work ethic, a focus on safety and a commitment to always look out for one another," said Caleb Roberson, BNSF's manager of military staffing.The magazine rated veteran-friendly firms based on evaluations that identified efforts to be accessible to veteran populations. The review process utilized independent and market research, interviews, diversity conference participation and survey responses. The magazine also presented a Best of the Best Award to Union Pacific Railroad.