Government & Law

BTU #225 - 12 Strong and Combatting Terrorism (Mark Mitchell)

BTU #225 - 12 Strong and Combatting Terrorism (Mark Mitchell)

Why Listen:
If you have seen  the movie, 12 Strong, or read the book Horse Soldiers, you know a little bit about Mark’s work. Both in the military and out of it, Mark has played a pivotal role in our countries defense. In this interview, we talk about his work in special operations immediately after September 11th, as well as his career since his military service as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations/Low Intensity Conflict. Mark works with a $13B budget and a 70,000 person team. This is a great interview for those of you looking to learn about government contracting roles or becoming a Senior Executive Service government employee, or those of you looking to hear some INCREDIBLE military stories.

About George:
Mark Mitchell is the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict at the Office of the Secretary of Defense. For those of you who have read the book Horse Soldiers, or seen the movie 12 Strong, you will be familiar with some of Mark’s incredible work. Mark started his career in the U.S. Army, where he served for over 28 years, most recently as a Colonel. Mark was among the first U.S. soldiers on the ground in Afghanistan after 9/11 and advised the Northern Alliance prior to the fall of the Taliban regime. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions in the November 2001 Battle of Qala-I Jangi in Mazar-e Sharif.

BTU #224 - 24 Year Army Vet to Principal at the McChrystal Group (Patrica Collins)

BTU #224 - 24 Year Army Vet to Principal at the McChrystal Group (Patrica Collins)

Why Listen:
After the loss of her leg, Patty continued to serve on Active Duty and eventually competed for the US in the Paralympics. In this interview she talks about how her accident changed her view on athletics, and how to shift one’s thinking from Post Traumatic Stress to Post Traumatic Growth. We talk about the difficulties Veterans face in their career transition around finding a new identity, and how to get out of your comfort zone and find new goals to combat this. We talk  about the “imposter  syndrome,” workalike balance, consulting, and more.

About Patty:
Patty Collins is a Principal at the McChrystal Group, which has leadership development offerings that are designed to equip leaders with the knowledge and tools to shape culture and cultivate performance within their organizations. Patty served as an Army Communications Officer for over 24 years, and spent over seven years assigned to Special Mission units within the Joint Special Operations Command. After her transition from the military, Patty was a member of the 2016 US Paralympic Team, representing the U.S. in the sport of Triathlon in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. Patty holds a Master’s degree from the National War College and a Bachelor of Arts from Rutgers University.

BTU #211 - Running the Bulls, Creating a Documentary, and Team Rubicon (Dennis Clancey)

BTU #211 - Running the Bulls, Creating a Documentary, and Team Rubicon (Dennis Clancey)

Why Listen:
Dennis is a renaissance man. He started his career at Amazon, before transitioning to one of the nation’s pre-eminent nonprofits, Team Rubicon. Along with that, he has done the running of the bulls over 80 times over the last 12 years, and directed a documentary about his experience. Team Rubicon is an organization that should be on every Veterans radar. They unite the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders to rapidly deploy emergency response teams. This meets a need for purpose, connection, contribution and excitement that many guests on my show have expressed they missed after their military service.

About Dennis:
Dennis Clancey is the Deputy Director of Field Operations for Team Rubicon, a non-profit organization that unites the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders to rapidly deploy emergency response teams. He started out at West Point, after which he served in the Army for over six years earning a Bronze Star for combat leadership. Since his military service, he has worked at Amazon as an Operations Manager, and as the Director of the documentary, Chasing Red.

BTU #210 - Army Sergeant to Stanford Law School and Chief of Staff at Hewlett Packard (Drew Kambic)

BTU #210 - Army Sergeant to Stanford Law School and Chief of Staff at Hewlett Packard (Drew Kambic)

Why Listen:
Drew went from Active Duty Army Sergeant to Stanford Law School, which is an incredible leap. He talks about advice for getting into Law School, what it’s like, why Veterans may love (or hate it), what career options it opens, and more. He also talks about his decision to go into the corporate world instead of practicing law. We talk about his work at Hewlett Packard Enterprises, and how he served as Chief of Staff for the Chief Sales & Marketing Officer. We also talk about how Veterans are qualified to do project management and strategic operations work.

About Drew:
Drew Kambic is the Director for Strategy & Planning as well as the Head of Operations for License Verification in the Americas for Micro Focus (formerly Hewlett Packard). He started out in the Army, where he served for over 8 years, most recently as a Sergeant and Infantry Team Leader. While on Active Duty he earned a B.S. and B.A at The Ohio State University, and after his military service he earned his J.D. from Stanford Law School. He has worked at HPE as a Senior Manager for Operations Performance, as well as the Chief of Staff for the Chief sales and Marketing Officer.

BTU #199 - Army Special Forces to the White House & Published Author (John Fenzel)

BTU #199 - Army Special Forces to the White House & Published Author (John Fenzel)

Why Listen:
John has had an incredible career both in and out of the military, including his work as a White House Fellow and the creator of the color coded alert system. He is a published author as well of three books. We talk about failure, resilience, telling your story, and more.

About John:
John Fenzel is a senior Army Special Forces officer who has served on our nation’s battlefields throughout Europe and the Middle East for over 30 years. He has served as a military assistant on the personal staff of the Secretary of Defense, as a Special Assistant to the Vice President, and as a White House Fellow during the Clinton and Bush administrations. He is the author of three books: The Fifth Column, The Sterling Forest, and The Lazarus Covenant. John is a graduate of the Naval War College and the National War College. Born in Iowa and raised outside Chicago, John lives with his wife and three children in Annapolis, MD.

BTU #182 - 21+ Year Air Force Veteran to Executive Director at the Pat Tillman Foundation (Killjan Anderson)

BTU #182 - 21+ Year Air Force Veteran to Executive Director at the Pat Tillman Foundation (Killjan Anderson)

Killjan Anderson is the Executive Director at the Pat Tillman Foundation, an organization that unites and empowers remarkable military veterans and spouses as the next generation of public and private sector leaders committed to service beyond self. He started his career in the United States Air Force, where he served for over 21 years, retiring as a Command Chief Master Sergeant. He holds an MBA from the Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business, and a B.S. in Management from the University of Maryland University College.

Why Listen: 

Kill not only has an incredible story of his own transition from the Air Force, but he is also the Managing Director of one of the preeminent Veteran support organizations - the Pat Tillman Foundation. We discuss his advice on career, passion, approaching a transition as a process rather than an event, the Pat Tillman Foundation and much, much more.

BTU #166 - Marines to Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs (Steve Colley)

BTU #166 - Marines to Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs (Steve Colley)

After his military service, Steve sought out a career in Public Service, and has worked as a Staff Member on the Senate Committee On Veterans’ Affairs. For those of you who are interested in a career in politics or public service, this is a great episode. Also, if you’re curious about what is going on in Capital Hill as it relates to Veterans Affairs, this is also a great interview to check out.

BTU #156 - Attorney at Jenner & Block (LaRue Robinson)

BTU #156 - Attorney at Jenner & Block (LaRue Robinson)

LaRue managed to find a role at one of the most profitable law firms in the United States. He talks about what it’s like to work at a law firm, the common career paths associated with this sort of roles, and advice about the interview and application process. LaRue served in the JAG Corps while in the military, so some of his advice is tailored to JAG Corps Officers. However, if you’re considering a career in law, he provides some exceptional advice.

BTU #108: Team Red, White & Blue (Garrett Cathcart)

BTU #108: Team Red, White & Blue (Garrett Cathcart)

Garrett Cathcart is the Southeast Regional Director at Team Red, White & Blue - an organization that enriches the lives of America's veterans by connecting them to their communities through physical and social activities. He is also the Chief Community Engagement Officer at VETLANTA. He started out at West Point, after which he served in the Army for 8.5 years, with two years in Baghdad as a Recon Scout Platoon Leader and then as an Aide-de-Camp to Commanding General. After his transition from the Army he worked at NuVasive as an Associate Spine Representative before joining team RWB.

BTU #105 - Nathan Smith: Marines to COO at Hire Heroes USA

BTU #105 - Nathan Smith: Marines to COO at Hire Heroes USA

Nathan Smith is the Chief Operating Officer at Hire Heroes USA - which provides free, expert career coaching and job sourcing to hundreds of transitioning U.S. military members, veterans and military spouses each week, and over 16k veterans and spouses since 2007. He started out at the Virginia Military Institute, after which he served in the Marine Corps for seven years as an Infantry Officer. After his transition from the Marine Corps, he started at Hire Heroes USA as a Deputy Director, and was subsequently promoted to Executive Director and then most recently, Chief Operating Officer

BTU #101 - Joshua Jabin: Marines to COO at the Travis Manion Foundation

BTU #101 - Joshua Jabin: Marines to COO at the Travis Manion Foundation

Joshua Jabin is the Chief Operations Officer (COO) at Travis Manion Foundation. He started out at the Naval Academy, after which he served in the Marine Corps for 12 years, first as a Aviation Supply Logistics Officer, obtaining his MS in Operations Analysis at the Naval Postgraduate School, and teaching Mathematics at the Naval Academy. After his transition to the civilian sector, Joshua worked as a Senior Management Consultant at the ReefPoint Group, before joining the Travis Mountain Foundation about 2.5 years ago.

BTU #97: Jonny Coreson - Starting a company while on active duty

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This week I'm trying out a completely new interview format. If you'd like to listened to the full, unedited version of this interview, you can check it out here.

Jonny Coreson is currently on active duty in the military, and has started two different companies while on active duty. His current company - Blue Jacketeer - helps Navy Sailors prepare for their advancement exam. This is a great interview for anyone on Active Duty or recently separated who is interested in entrepreneurship.

Our Sponsor:

  • Audible is offering one FREE audio book to Beyond the Uniform listeners. You can claim this offer here, and see a list of books recommended by my guests at BeyondTheUniform.io/books

Selected Links

BTU #87 - Joe Musselman: Navy to Founder of The Honor Foundation

BTU #87 - Joe Musselman: Navy to Founder of The Honor Foundation

Joe Musselman is the Founder & CEO of The Honor Foundation. He started out at DePaul University. Joe enlisted in the Navy with intentions of becoming a Navy SEAL, but as he says, “God had other plans.” He sustained an injury that ultimately lead him to found The Honor Foundation. He is also the Founder of The NEXT Series and The SOF Garage.

BTU #84 - David Smith: Marine Corps infantryman to CMO of a Norwegian Startup

BTU #84 - David Smith: Marine Corps infantryman to CMO of a Norwegian Startup

David Smith is the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Dogu, a Norwegian Business-to-Business (B2B) software company that creates unique solutions that allow businesses to visualize data and and accelerate sales. He started out in the Marine Corps as an infantry rifleman. Since the Marines he has graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, volunteered as a social entrepreneur doing humanitarian work in over 12 countries, has been part of the Stanford Ignite Veterans program, and many other diverse activities I’m sure we’ll get into during the interview.

BTU #71 - Jeff Tiegs: 25 Years of Army Counter Terrorism to the Guardian Group

BTU #71 - Jeff Tiegs: 25 Years of Army Counter Terrorism to the Guardian Group

Jeff Tiegs is a Counter Terrorism and Counter Insurgency Expert with over 25 years in US Army Special Operations. His combat experience includes operations around the globe to include multiple tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. He is applying this expertise to Counter Trafficking in the United States and is the Chief Operating Officer for Guardian Group. Guardian Group is a non-profit that works with law enforcement to illuminate, disrupt, prosecute and relentlessly pursue child predators. After his transition from the Army, he attended Breakline Education, which we talked about in Episode 54 with Bethany Coates.

BTU #70 - Emily Cherniack: How New Politics is helping veterans of both parties run for office

BTU #70 - Emily Cherniack: How New Politics is helping veterans of both parties run for office

New Politics identifies top talent, helps them build a winning campaign infrastructure, and provides mentorship and support throughout their campaigns. In their pilot year in 2014, New Politics supported 5 national service candidates in key state and federal races across the country. They won three of those five races, including Congressman Seth Moulton’s unprecedented win in Massachusetts’ Sixth Congressional District. In 2016, New Politics supported 23 candidates in local, state, and federal races across the country. They won 17 primaries and 13 general elections.

BTU #69 - Alex Martin: Marine to Global Entrepreneur at AC Global Risk

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“At this point, I don't think I really could have a boundary [between professional and personal life]. It's not about a forty-hour work week, and being able to accomplish everything in forty hours; I get that. It's about constantly thinking about the product, thinking about the customers we have and the customers we want, where we're going to go and what the next steps are. I just can't turn it off: I dream about it, I think about it every minute, and there is no separation. Maybe that's unhealthy and a bad thing, but at this point if no one is as fanatically excited and obsessed with the product we're trying to create than the founders then I don't think it can work at this stage." – Alex Martin

Alex Martin is the CEO & Co-Founder of AC Global Risk, a company that creates solutions to transform how companies & governments vet, screen and assess internal and external human-based risk. Alex started out at the Naval Academy and served in the Marine Corps for seven years as a Infantry & Ground Reconnaissance Officer. After his transition from the Marines he founded Skye Maritime - maritime security services to commercial shipping - as well as the Kenya Team Leader for the non-profit, Nuru International. Alex is currently a Major in the Marine Corps Reserves.

The top three reasons to listen to this episode are:

  1. Service - Alex has continued to serve in the Marine Corps Reserves, he worked in Kenya with the organization Nuru helping local farmers grow their income, and his own company - AC Global Risk - has a service element as well. He’s a great role model for keeping service an active component in his life, and talks about how to serve as a for-profit venture
  2. Startups - Alex started his first company straight of the Marine Corps and it failed. He learned from it, and is on his second company, AC Global Risk. He is very honest and balanced in this interview about failure, about mistakes, and how these are essential for entrepreneurs
  3. Stanford Ignite - Alex goes in depth on the Stanford Ignite program as well as many other really valuable resources for those of you interested in startups

Our Sponsor

Audible is offering one FREE audio book to Beyond the Uniform listeners. You can claim this offer here, and see a list of books recommended by my guests at BeyondTheUniform.io/books

Selected Links

Show Notes

  • 2:08 - Alex's background
  • 2:50 - Alex's decision to transition from the Marine Corps to a civilian career
  • 3:39 - Alex's experience being part of the Reserves and how it has impacted his civilian career
  • 5:32 - Alex's experience as part of the Stanford Ignite program and how this impacted his entrepreneurial experience
  • 7:49 - An overview of Stanford Ignite as a program for veterans
  • 10:22 - Alex's experience at Nuru International
  • 15:15 - The genesis of Alex's second company, AC Global Risk
  • 17:40- An overview of AC Global Risk
  • 19:21  - What Alex's day-to-day life looks like as the CEO of AC Global Risk
  • 21:11 - Alex's lifestyle as an entrepreneur married to another entrepreneur
  • 24:27 - How long it took Alex to be able to pay himself as salary while he was starting his own company
  • 28:43 - Alex's biggest mistake in starting his own company and what he learned from it
  • 33:03 - Alex's team size at AC Global Risk and what his team looks like
  • 34:22 - Advice for any veteran thinking of starting their own company
  • 35:36 - Resources Alex would recommend to any veteran thinking of starting their own company
  • 37:53 - Advice for veterans seeking to raising capital for their own company, and the fundraising experience
  • 43:40 - Habits that Alex had to break when he left the military in order to be successful in his civilian career
  • 45:55 - Other mistakes that Alex made since departing the military and what he learned from them
  • 48:47 - Final words of wisdom for veterans of the Armed Forces

BTU #66 - Sean Barney: Purple Heart recipient to Congressional Candidate

BTU #66 - Sean Barney: Purple Heart recipient to Congressional Candidate

Sean Barney is a public defender. He started out at Swarthmore College, after which he served for five years as a Machine Gunner in the 25th Marine Regiment, where he was awarded the Purple Heart. Since transitioning from the Marines, Sean has worked at the Think Tank, Third Way. He has also been extremely active in politics - one of the main things we’ll talk about today - his experience here is extensive but a few highlights are serving as both the Campaign Manager and then Policy Director for Governor Jack Markell  and a Candidate for Congress. Sean holds a Master of Arts from Columbia University, a Masters of Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of government, and a Juris Doctor from Yale Law School.

BTU #58 - Duane France: Army NCO to Thought Leader on Veterans Mental Health

 

“There is still maybe a stigma in the community. There's an idea that veterans are viewed in one of three ways. They're either a victim, this broken winged bird that needs to be nursed back to life. Or they're a villain, they're this crazy combat vet who is about to explode at any moment. Or they're seen as some sort of mythic hero. And none of those are true. No veteran I've ever known wants to be treated like a victim. Being labeled a villain could make them more aggressive. and most will resist being called a hero. And so there are these archetypes that the community sees, but in reality we're really a combination of all of them."– Duane France

Duane France serves as the Program Director for the Colorado Veteran Health and Wellness Agency, as well as the Director of Veteran Services for the Family Care Center, and also as a Clinical Mental Health Counselor. He started out as a Noncommissioned officer in the Army, where he served for 22 years with five combat and operational deployments. Since leaving the Army he has established himself as a Veteran Mental Health Thought Leader, being listed by LinkedIn as one of the top five most influential veterans on LinkedIn. You can find him online at his website www.veteranmentalhealth.com and on Twitter as ThCounselingVet

The top two reasons to listen to today’s episode

  1. Responsibility - Duane has devoted his career to helping veterans and established himself as a Veteran Mental Health Thought Leader. In this episode he talks about the main problems addressing the veteran community. You may think this doesn’t apply to you, but if not it definitely affects some of the people you served with. Duane has great advice that would be helpful to anyone who served in the military
  2. Counselor - Duane retired in the military and then approached his second career as a Clinical Mental Health Counselor. If you’re interested in this industry, he’s a great role model to follow.

Our Sponsor

Audible is offering one FREE audio book to Beyond the Uniform listeners. You can claim this offer here, and see a list of books recommended by my guests at BeyondTheUniform.io/books

Selected Links

Show Notes

  • 2:00 - Duane's background
  • 2:56 - Duane's decision to leave the Army
  • 5:46 - What drew Duane to the mental health profession
  • 9:05 - The different capacities in which Duane currently serves
  • 10:46 - The day-to-day life of Duane's work in the mental health industry
  • 13:40 - The most helpful way that Duane prepared for his career, and advice to other veterans looking to enter the mental health profession
  • 17:24 - A story from Duane's life of the "paradox of the veteran's story"
  • 22:17 - Advice for veterans in becoming more comfortable talking about their experience in the military
  • 23:50 - What stands in the way of realizing that one single thing poses the majority of problems in the veteran community
  • 26:33 - Some of the biggest challenges facing veterans today
  • 45:13 - Advice on how veterans may uncover a new purpose after their military service
  • 49:50 - Resources that Duane would recommend to any veteran listening
  • 56:25 - Final words of wisdom

BTU #57 - Alex Pedersen: Air Force to Google to Employee #5 at a Startup

BTU #57 - Alex Pedersen: Air Force to Google to Employee #5 at a Startup

Alex Pedersen is the COO of POLCO - an early stage startup that is a political participation platform for local governments. He started out at the Air Force Academy, after which he received his Masters of Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. He served for seven years as an Air Force Officer, before transitioning directly to Google where he worked on Strategy, Planning & Analysis.