New York, NY - (October 25, 2011) – Platinum-selling country artist Rodney Atkins has partnered with Applebee’s to launch the world’s largest ongoing military thank you campaign, honoring veterans and active duty soldiers worldwide. As Ambassador of the Thank You Movement, Rodney Atkins officially launched the campaign this morning with an exclusive announcement on NBC’s Today show, followed by a stellar live performance for an enthusiastic crowd of civilians, veterans and military organizations in New York’s Times Square. Guests of honor at the event included representatives from Pinnacle Five, comprised of senior enlisted members from the all respective branches of the U.S. Military, as well as Disabled American Veterans (DAV) and—the largest military and veteran membership organization consisting of 10 million members.

Aimed at creating a groundswell of gratitude for our nation’s military, the Thank You Movement offers messages of thanks to our veterans and troops via, Applebee’s Facebook Fan Page, #thankyoumovement on Twitter and on YouTube. The Web site will host a live rolling counter of ongoing “Thank Yous.” Veterans and active duty troops can then go online anytime to see and hear heartfelt thanks from the people they serve.

The Thank You Movement is a natural extension of both Rodney Atkins’ and Applebee’s longstanding dedication to veterans and active duty military. Atkins has always made time to support the U.S. armed forces and their families, often visiting with soldiers, volunteering at various base concerts, and spending time with wounded warriors at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. In 2012, he will participate in a USO tour of military bases abroad. Likewise, Applebee’s has served more than two million free “thank you meals” to the military on Veteran’s Day for the past two years, and will continue the tradition this year.

In addition to his military support and stellar musical talent, Atkins spends his time in a variety of charitable efforts. As the 2010 Spokesman for the National Council for Adoption at Holston Methodist Children’s Home in Greeneville, Tenn. — where he himself was adopted as an infant — Atkins performs there as often as he can, and participated in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for a new “Rodney Atkins Youth Home” in 2009. He also headlined the 2011 Music City Gives Back Benefit Concert, which contributed donations to the American Red Cross Relief Fund for tornado victims of the recent storms throughout the Midwest and Southeast.

Atkins’ latest album, the highly anticipated Take A Back Road, was recently released on Curb Records; to listen to the new album, click here. The irresistibly catchy title track and album’s first single reached the top of the country charts for two weeks in a row. To watch the No. 1 hit song’s new video by famed Hollywood film director Andy Tennant (Fool’s Gold, Hitch, Sweet Home Alabama), click here.

Throughout his career, Rodney Atkins has racked up eight top ten singles - with six going straight to the top of the charts. A glimpse of his many recent career highlights can be viewed here. For additional background on Rodney Atkins, read this recent Billboard story.