Marty Skovlund, Jr.
Marty is a veteran of the 1st Ranger Battalion and Syracuse Recruiting Battalion, a former small business owner, the author of Violence of Action: The Untold Stories of the 75th Ranger Regiment in the War on Terror (Blackside Publishing) as well as Ranger Knowledge: The Complete Study Guide (St. Martins Press). He is also the executive producer of the award-winning documentary Nomadic Veterans, and the award winning short-narrative Prisoner of War. He is currently working on his third book as well as pursuing a career in film and television.
Scott is a veteran of a half-dozen combat deployments and has served in several different Special Operations units over the course of his Army career. Scott’s writing focuses largely on veterans’ issues, but he is also a big proponent of Constitutional rights and has a deep interest in politics. He often allows other veterans who request anonymity to publish their work under his byline. Scott welcomes story ideas and feedback on his articles and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Leo is an ex-pat combat vet. After 230 credits he hasn’t finished college yet. From firefighter EMT to the life a Ranger leads. He’s been a medic in Afghanistan as well as Iraq and hasn’t met a pint of beer he won’t attack. A fighter and runner… a swimmer and a lover. A competitive exerciser and free will admirer. His pen is dipped in the ink of allegory and he won’t hesitate to tell his story. Five continents and 31 countries this year alone, he lives his life like a rolling stone.
Leonard O. Benton
Leonard is retired from active duty military service with 24 years and two combat deployments to Iraq. He left the Regular Army after 10 years and became a National Guard Recruiter for his first tour in the AGR program followed by over 10 years in Operations as Force Protection, CBRN and three years as C-IED. He has an Associates degree and is currently working on his Bachelor’s. He is an amateur metal smith and when he is not working or writing he can often be found in his shop pounding away in the attempt to transform a lump of metal into an icon of beauty or function. His years of operational planning, threat analysis, and a deeply cynical view of our imperfect world leads him to focus on world events and cultural beliefs that tend to cause the most friction and chaos in the world around us. He is a libertarian and he believes in personal freedoms and accountability. The Havok Journal gave him an outlet to express the things he sees wrong in the world and the opportunity to once again provide advice on how to fix it. Leonard can be contacted a email@example.com.
Justina is a stay at home mom with a psychology degree, which means she spends half the day losing her mind and the other half psychoanalyzing it. She was born and raised in New York and holds an advanced degree in social science. Justina is an Army wife to a reluctant vegetarian (he’ll thank her later) and stay at home mom to a toddler (whom she is sure will live in a nudist colony one day). Having a strong background in health and sports psychology, her passion is anything health and fitness. Justina finds that writing is a wonderful outlet for her over-analytical brain and thoroughly enjoys putting her minds endless energy into exploring how being a mother and military wife affects her view of everyday events.
Andrew D. Fisher
Andrew is a 2020 graduate from Texas A&M College of Medicine after serving many years as a physician assistant with the U.S. Army. He is currently completing a general surgery internship. He is the co-creator of the Ranger O LOw (ROLO) titer whole blood program that is now utilized throughout the Department of Defense. He is a member of the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care and Stop the Bleed Education Consortium. Additionally, he is the assistant director for the Resuscitation Adjuncts: Prehospital Transfusion & REBOA course and on the Board of Directors for Global Response Management.
Christopher is a native of South Dakota, currently residing in the land of endless winter —Fargo, North Dakota. A proud Dakotan, he has spent a majority of his life in the Midwest, sprinkled with a brief (albeit necessary) stint in the high mountains of Colorado. Hart received his undergraduate degrees in Political Science and Anthropology from North Dakota State University and has extensive experience within higher education, government institutions and the legal and healthcare fields. His research interests include: international politics, ethnic conflicts, electoral dynamics, as well as philosophy, mythology and the fields of anthropology.
In his free time, Hart enjoys pursuing other interests such as camping and hiking, as well as being creative in his musical, artistic and graphic design endeavors. A student of the human condition, one of his greatest passions is genealogical research — pursuing the stories and facts about ancestral ghosts of the past. In addition to his contributions to The Havok Journal, he also serves as a writer for the SB Nation’s Mile High Report, dedicated to covering the Denver Broncos and is also working on his first fantasy novel.
Comments, criticisms and suggestions are always welcome. Feel free to contact him via e-mail — firstname.lastname@example.org.
Richard is originally from Savannah, GA but moved to a suburb of Detroit, Michigan at the age of nine where he lived until the age of eighteen. He signed his Army enlistment contract at seventeen, and left for Basic Training shortly after graduating high school in 2004. He is a veteran of three combat deployments, all of which were served with 1st Ranger Battalion as a light infantryman before leaving for the civilian world in 2008. He has worked as a Ballroom and Latin Dancing instructor, personal trainer, and did a short stint in the Army Reserves where he served as a Training NCO for his battalion. He graduated from college in 2013 with a Bachelors degree in Rehabilitation Sciences, and is currently in medical school pursuing his MD. His reading and writing interests include medicine, veteran’s issues, and anything related to being a more interesting and well-rounded man. He enjoys shooting, dancing with his wife, and shaving with a straight razor. It is his life’s ambition to become the most interesting man in the world.
Baz has served as a platoon commander and company commander in the United States Marine Corps’ Infantry and Reconnaissance communities for over a decade. He has deployed two times to Iraq and twice to Afghanistan. Baz was lucky enough to have a price put on his head in both Iraq and Afghanistan so he must be doing something right. He has a bachelors degree in english literatutre, is a military freefall parachutist, combatant diver and Basic Reconnaissance Course graduate. He writes here in his capacity as a private individual, and his views are not those of the U.S. Marine Corps.
Tyler is a man of many talents. He is a writer for The Havok Journal, employee of Avera Sacred Heart Hospital Emergency Department in Yankton, South Dakota, and prospective medical school student. He frequently browses peer-reviewed journals such as Nature and Science, in order to provide readers with the most up-to-date and accurate news as possible. Thanks to his ability to understand complex scientific topics, and then convey highly technical writing to the reader, he is able to give an easily digestible summary of primary research articles and their impact in a reader’s everyday life. He is a National Registry certified EMT, holds a Bachelor’s Degree of Art’s in Pre-Professional studies (essentially basic biomedical sciences), and has over 1200 hours of research experience with two different projects – MRSA and endometriosis. As he applies for medical schools, he works in the emergency department in a position most easily described as “grease for the department,” assisting the nurses, doctors, and patients wherever he can. He thoroughly enjoys increasing his knowledge in the sciences, and if there are any questions or ideas for topics he will try to address them as promptly as possible, either privately or publicly through The Havok Journal.
Matt has more than 15 years of experience in cybersecurity and information technology. He has lead and performed numerous red-team activities against public and private sector entities, to include major Fortune 500 corporations and federal agencies. Medically retired from the Army after injuries sustained during combat operations, Matt resides in the Austin, Texas area, working for a major consumer electronics firm.
Scoti Springfield Domeij
Scoti is the proud Gold Star mom of 2/75 Army Ranger, Sgt. 1st Class Kristoffer Domeij, KIA on October 22, 2011 during his 14th deployment in Afghanistan. Kristoffer is the most deployed soldier in American to be killed in action. His death inducted Scoti into the amazing military family and Ranger community. A civilian, Scoti is woefully ignorant of military protocol and acronyms. Scoti serves as the Vice President and Media Liaison for the Pikes Peak Chapter of the American Gold Star Mothers.
To honor her son and all who’ve died while serving our country, in June 2020 at the 75th D-Day Anniversary in Normandy, France, Scoti tandem-jumped with Rangers, who served with her firstborn. DevinSupertramp’s team filmed the jump with Rangers and The Horse Soldiers and produced a 40-minute documentary Here Am I, Send Me, which premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival at BrandStorytelling.
As publisher for Blackside Publishing, she publishes stories that are raw, real, and transparent. Scoti teaches writing workshops at writing conferences and served as Director of Springs Writers. She’s a solo-parenting columnist for Colorado Springs Kids and was editor/writer for nine publishers. With over 400 published articles, she’s published in diverse publications including The New York Times, Southwest Art, School Daze, SAM Journal, and parenting magazines. She contributed stories to Violence of Action: The Untold Stories of the 75th Ranger Regiment in the War on Terror (Blackside Concepts), Love is a Verb Devotional and Heaven Touching Earth (Bethany House), Christmas Miracles (St. Martin’s Press), Extraordinary Answers to Prayer: In Times of Change (Guideposts), and The Mommy Diaries: Finding Yourself in the Daily Adventure (Revell).
A researchaholic, Scoti was Senior Research Assistant/Art Production Coordinator for the 27-part film series shot on location in Israel entitled That the World May Know. She interacted with top scholars, archeologists, and museums while researching geography, seasons, feasts, culture, dress, facial ethnicity, machinery, furniture, weapons, wars, architecture, archeological discoveries, Roman culture and government, ancient religious beliefs, flora and fauna to conceptualize historically, archeologically and biblically-accurate art compositions used for over 200 art renderings and maps.
Cora is a horror/thriller writer who currently lives outside of Tampa, Florida with her husband and their children. Her first novel, Briar Lake, has been picked up for publication and was released in 2015. Originally hailing from one of the small towns that surround Ft. Bragg North Carolina, Cora wanted nothing to do with the military lifestyle until her husband swept her off her feet. At a very early age, Cora fell in love with reading and soon thereafter discovered her affinity for writing. This love helped her to excel in school, except when she would get caught reading in algebra. While she can’t count very high, Cora is proud of her role as a military spouse and everything that it encompasses, including its unique challenges. Cora balances her time chasing babies, creating monsters, being an awesome wife, drinking absurd amounts of coffee and writing for The Havok Journal. Cora can be reached at email@example.com
Mat is a former Army Ranger, combat veteran, author, video producer, and CEO of the wildly successful Article 15 Clothing empire and Black Rifle Coffee Company.
Gabriel joined the Army in the late 1990s and served vaingloriously in the Ranger Regiment during their first two deployments to Afghanistan. Now he’s an Infantry Officer, trying to make the world a little less bullshit and a little more reasonable to live in…one OPORDER at a time.
Nick is a Police Officer with the Redwood City Police Department in Northern California. He has spent much of his career as a gang and narcotics investigator. He is a member of a Multi-Jurisdictional SWAT Team since 2001 and is currently a Team Leader. He previously served as a paratrooper in the U.S. Army and is a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He has a Master’s Degree from the University Of San Francisco.
J.J. is an Army Veteran and the Director of Operations for Team Red, White, and Blue. In his spare time, he practices both yoga and functional fitness, and enjoys coaching youth sports.
Craig “Sawman” Sawyer
Craig is a veteran of the Marine Corps and a former Navy SEAL. After serving with SEAL Team One and Naval Special Warfare Development Group (DEVGRU), he went on to run personal security details for the likes of Donald Rumsfeld, Hillary Clinton, John Negroponte, and John McCain. He also started Tactical Insider, a company that provides technical and military advice to Hollywood, and is a regular on major network news shows and popular television programs including Top Shot, Sniper: Most Dangerous Missions, and Rhino Wars.
Paul J. O’Leary
Paul is an Army veteran, both active and reserve, who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He has been both an officer and a senior NCO and prefers the NCO Corps. For the past 20 years, he has been a Florida police officer serving as a patrol officer, field training officer, hostage negotiator, and detective. As a detective, he has primarily focused on major crimes including robbery, sex crimes, and homicide. He is a graduate student and a father of five who enjoys hiking, running, and photography. He is also a writer for Ranger Up’s Rhino Den and Unapologetically American.
J.E. served in the Marine Corps from 1996 to 2005. He is a combat veteran, including Operations Iraqi Freedom I and II as a Counterintelligence Specialist, and the recipient of a Purple Heart and a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with ‘V’ Combat Distinguishing Device. While in Iraq in 2003 and 2004, J.E. served as a part of 1st CI/HUMINT Company, 1st Intelligence Battalion. He was attached to 3rd Battalion/5th Marines,Task Force Tripoli and 3rd Battalion/23rd Marines at various points during the invasion and was attached to 2nd Battalion/4th Marines in Ramadi in 2004. Including post-Marine Corps civilian deployments as an intelligence analyst for the Department of Defense, he served over forty months in the Middle East and Central Asia between 2002 and 2011. J.E. has written articles for TIME magazine’s Battleland online as well as RangerUp.com.
Cody is a former Combat Engineer (12B) with the U.S. Army’s 321st Engineer Battalion and is currently the founder and CEO of 5Bravo. He also makes killer BBQ.
Shane, 34, is currently on active duty and has served with 2nd Ranger Battalion and 75th RSTB. He is a veteran of 9 combat deployments to Afghanistan and 2 to Iraq. He loves all things outdoors; hiking, camping, exploring, shooting, hunting, and has never met a fish he wouldn’t try to catch. He loves cooking for his family, but hates following the instructions. He has been married to his amazing wife Carisa for over 12 years. He is the proud owner of guns, a Harley, an itchy Boston terrier named Dozie, 3 sons, 1 testicle, a minivan, and an aggressively affectionate pit bull named Athena. He enjoys writing about anything that makes people laugh, veterans affairs, and his family. Shane loves a good movie quote and a good road trip. Although he enjoys it, he is also an awful wood worker. Shane’s articles in The Havok Journal represent the personal experiences and opinions of the author and are not official publications of the United States Army or the U.S. Government.
Michael J. Penney
Michael is a former infantryman and Marine Corps Combat Arms instructor. During his eight year career in the Corps, he served with distinction on the battlefields of Ramadi Iraq (05-07), Kajaki and Sangin Afghanistan (2011). As an Instructor, Michael has trained Marines in combat marksmanship, precision weapon systems and foreign/ threat weapons. Since leaving the Corps in 2012, Michael has found new ways to serve the country he loves. He is an inventor, entrepreneur, author and public speaker; contributing to worthwhile organizations that focus on changing the world in positive ways. Michael’s goal is to empower fellow Marines to achieve greatness after leaving the Corps.
Professionally, Michael is the chief contributor to BloodStripes.com a professional development toolkit for successful Marines. He is a radio personality on cigarsandseastories.com, a podcast for Marines and FMF Corpsmen. As an inspirational speaker, Michael shows how the military prepares Marines for entrepreneurship and the corporate world. Go to michaeljpenney.com to see how military training carries over to the business realm.
Boone is an author, a leader in the Warfighter Rights Movement, and is the first nationally-recognized radio talkshow personality who is also a combat veteran from the current conflict. He is also very involved with the arts and works as a video producer/director of REDCON-1 Music Group. A combat-injured veteran, Boone is a champion of the effort to combat veteran suicide. As part of this effort he crafted the Spartan Pledge in order to help veterans find a new mission and help each other.
Boone’s message is simple: “America has lost faith in what they used to believe were the heroes of Hollywood. America has become disgusted with the political climate of today so the only place to turn to and trust for leadership is the Warfighter.”
You can hear Boone’s insightful and motivating show every Saturday on KNEWS 107.3 live from Reno, Nevada.
Loren started his career in the infantry and as soon as he was eligible attended Special Forces Assessment and Selection. He spent the next 16 plus years serving in the various positions within the Special Forces Regiment. He served in the 25th ID, 10th SFG (A), 3rd SFG (A) and retired as an instructor in the Special Forces Advanced Mountain Operations School. He served on a Mountain Team, Mobility Team, and in a Special Forces Direct Action Company. He deployed twice to Kosovo, the first time in 1999, eight days after the air war ended, and was there for his second trip during 9/11. From April of 2002 to May of 2009 he deployed five times to Afghanistan and twice to Iraq. Loren started his Special Forces career as an 18E and in 2008 graduated the SF Intel Sgt’s Course and became an 18F. He is a graduate of SFARTAETC, SF Mountain School, Jumpmaster, and multiple civilian mountaineering-related schools.
Matt is a Director of Product Management for a leading mobile platform enablement company. He has traveled extensively in the United States and overseas for business and travel. His travels include India, Mexico, Europe, and Japan where he was an active blogger immediately following the Kaimashi quake. Matt enjoys spending time outdoors and capturing the world through the lens of his Nikon D90. He enjoys researching the political, economic, and historical influences of the places he visits in the world, and he commonly blogs about these experiences. Matt received a Bachelor in Computer Science at Mercer University, and is a noted speaker on innovation, holding over 150 patents. His remaining time is spent with his family going from soccer game to soccer game on the weekends.
E.M. is a Silicon Valley techpreneur and later Private Equity investor and Investment Banker with an emphasis on very early-stage technology companies. After completing active duty service with 1st BN 1st Special Forces Group, E.M founded the Honos Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to empowering local entrepreneurship in violence repressed areas, and Founder and Managing Director of Emerio Group, an early-stage investment advisory. Following a degree in Strategic Studies and Defense Analysis at Norwich, he is now pursuing Ph.D. studies in Interdisciplinary Engineering, with an emphasis on Computational Engineering at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
Chris is a disabled veteran who served in the U.S. Army as an airborne infantryman from 1993-1996. He now works as a Registered Nurse and hospital supervisor. He is a veteran advocate, competitive weightlifter, and Scottish Highland Games amateur athlete. Other interests include riding Harleys, reading, and writing. He is married, with three kids, 2 dogs, and a cat that somehow breached the perimeter and continues to dwell among them.
Sean is a complete jerk. He served in 1/75, first in C Co and then in sniper section, so he thinks he knows it all. Between the Army, contracting for BW, and working for SOCOM as a civilian, he has more than a dozen trips to Iraq and Afghanistan but he never really did anything except go to the gym and play XBOX. Sean has his BA in International Affairs (which shouldn’t even really be a degree), a Master’s Degree in Business, and he’s about half way through with his Doctorate in Education. It’s obvious that he doesn’t know what he wants to do because none of that stuff is related. Sean is married, but no one has a clue how she deals with him always having to be right about every little f-ing thing. They have a son; thankfully, the wife does most of the parenting so maybe the kid won’t turn out all crappy like his dad. Complaints about how dumb Sean’s articles are can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Christopher Paul Meyer
Chris writes regularly at The Havok Journal in addition to hosting the Profiles in Havok podcast. He is a former nightclub bouncer, firefighter, corporate security trainer, and prison chaplain. He has done stand-up, been homeless for extended periods of time, had screenplays optioned, and gotten married. He was also in the military and spent 33 months in foreign combat zones, earning a Bronze Star in Afghanistan. He has written one book, edited another, and is working on a third. He can be reached at Savage Wonder.
Nate spent four years attempting to become a preacher, and later a chaplain. After deploying with the Marine Corps, Nate realized that being a Scout Sniper was way more fun, and hilarity ensued as he spent the next eight years attempting to do that job for the glory of our republic and our illustrious Corps. After deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as a stint as a WPPS contractor, Nate set down the gun and devoted his life to teaching his family (and indeed the world) the wonders of beards, improper civilian attire, knife hands, and the DD214. He is a fan of chick flicks like “Commando” and “Boondock Saints.”
He views The Lord of the Rings as his bible, you know, next to the actual one. Nate also attempts to write at www.natecoffey.wordpress.com, and can be found on Facebook at “The Tater Blog.” He spends his free time shivering in tree stands across the Midwest (not to hunt, he just really thinks they’re comfortable, and politically leans a bit to the left…of Ragnar Lothbrok.
Aaron is a Marine Corps infantry veteran and graduate of the University of Colorado. He has been a Crossfit coach, security contractor and student of three foreign languages. He hosts the current events podcast “The Burn Pit” along with his father, who is also a veteran, and is writing his debut novel.
Pat lives deep in the Alaskan bush and has to walk twenty miles every day to find internet connection. His background includes being a mediocre Air Force PJ, the owner of multiple camper vans around the world, and, well, that’s about it.
Marshall has served in the 4th Infantry Division and two Special Forces Groups. A veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, he is passionate about international relations, domestic affairs, and successful veteran transition, both out of and back onto active duty.
Brandon is a former US Army Ranger with 4 rotations to Afghanistan and 11 years of service. He is the co-founder and principal at Applied Leadership Partners. Check them out at www.appliedleadershippartners.com.
James A. Gagliano
James has some three decades’ worth of practical leadership experience, both in traditional military units as a U.S. Army Infantry Officer and in federal law enforcement executive-level assignments with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). He spent 25 years as an FBI criminal investigator, SWAT Team Leader, member of the FBI’s elite Hostage Rescue Team (HRT), Undercover Agent, Task Force Commander, Legal Attaché (Diplomat), and as Chief-of-Staff for the Assistant-Director-in-Charge of the FBI’s New York Division. He has led tactical and diplomatic operations in Afghanistan and México City, and served tours in parts of Africa, Europe, and the Middle East, as well as assignments in combat theaters in Afghanistan, while assigned to the military’s Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC).
He is a recipient of the FBI’s second-highest award for valor, the Medal for Bravery. Now retired from the FBI, Jimmy serves as an Adjunct Assistant Professor, instructing undergraduates in Homeland Security, Criminal Justice, Military History, and Leadership courses at St. John’s University in Jamaica, Queens and is a leadership consultant with the Thayer Leader Development Group (TLDG) located at West Point, NY. He is also a full-time Law Enforcement Analyst, CNN Contributor, and delivers speeches across the country in corporate and university settings.
Greg is a former Airborne Infantryman, PSYOP Team Chief, political consultant, professional mil blogger, and is Code Platoon’s Student Outreach Coordinator. He holds a BA in history, a Masters of Science in organizational psychology, and is currently pursuing an MA in history. He is married with four children who keep him more than slightly busy and is passionate about helping veterans find their paths in life and develop the skills needed to pursue their goals.
Kevin is a thirteen-year veteran of the North Carolina Army National Guard, with deployments to Egypt and Syria. He was going to be a lifer like you, but then he took a staircase to the knee.
Charles served 27 years in the US Army, including seven combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan with various Special Operations Forces units. He also completed operational assignments in Egypt, the Philippines, and the Republic of Korea. He is the owner of The Havok Journal and the executive director of the Second Mission Foundation. The views expressed in this article are his own and do not reflect those of the US Government or any other person or entity.
Dr. Dan Pronk
Dr. Pronk completed his medical schooling on an Army scholarship and served the majority of his military career with Special Operations units, including four tours of Afghanistan and over 100 combat missions. Dr. Pronk was awarded the Commendation for Distinguished Service for his conduct in action on his second tour of Afghanistan. During his military service Dr. Pronk served as an Australian medical liaison to the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care, as well as representing Australian Special Operations at the NATO Special Operations Forces Medical Expert Panel. Dr. Pronk holds a Fellowship with the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, and is an instructor on the Royal Australian College of Surgeon’s Early Management of Severe Trauma Course. Dr. Pronk currently works as a Senior Medical Officer in the Emergency Department of a regional hospital, serves as the Medical Director of TacMed Australia, and as a tactical medical adviser to a number of Police Tactical Groups and Other Government Agencies.
J.C. is a leadership consultant, Partner and co-Founder of Prodromos Leadership Team, who advises at the strategic, operational, team and individual levels. He has a strong background in leadership development, executive personnel assessment and selection, strategy, coaching, counseling and developing innovative solutions to complex problems.
JC served in the U.S. Army as an infantry officer for 20 years, primarily in special operations and special missions units with more than 11 combat tours. Since retiring from the military, JC has brought his innovative and unconventional thoughts on education, leadership and resiliency into the private sector, consulting with Fortune 500 companies, the NFL, NBA, NCAA and professional sports teams including the Denver Broncos, Carolina Panthers and the Charlotte Hornets.
JC recently wrote and published the thought-provoking, groundbreaking book titled “A Light in the Darkness: Leadership Development for the Unknown”, which has been implemented by major corporations including the NFL and Microsoft and endorsed by leaders in the field of education, sports and entertainment, business and the military.
JC is considered a thought leader in adaptive and proactive programs of instruction centered on the development of leadership behaviors and values suited to dynamic environments and situations of ambiguity and adversity. JC recently developed the “Prodromos Developmental Model”, a capacity-building system designed to develop people and leaders for the future, which is outlined in his book. His methods have been featured in Forbes Magazine and the Huffington Post and his work has been referenced in Forbes, Inc. and Entrepreneur.
He holds a Masters Degree from the Naval War College and was a Senior Fellow in the Service Chief’s Fellowship at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
He has earned 3 Bronze Stars, 3 Meritorious Service Medals, a Joint Commendation Medal, and the Order of Saint Maurice. He is a Liberty Fellow, a part of The Aspen Institute and the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Dr. Alice Atalanta, Ph.D.
Dr. Atalanta is a writer, USA Boxing athlete, combatives instructor, philanthropist, and veterans’ advocate who is passionate about helping veterans tell their stories. Her latest project is an upcoming book with J.C. Glick, “Meditations of an Army Ranger,” but past clients have run the gamut from former SEAL Jeff Boss (author of “Navigating Chaos”) to the President of Floyd Mayweather’s $100m Money Team Brand. Dr. Atalanta is a sought-after commentator in the fight world on the topic of women’s personal defense, and she is available for booking as a Speaker-Buzz keynote speaker. For more information on how Dr. Atalanta might be able to help you turn your ideas into a book, please visit www.aliceatalanta.com.
Nathan K. Player
Nathan is a recent graduate of the Colombian Superior School of War. He has a master’s degree in environmental management and has taught at the University level. Nathan is an avid reader and student of history. He is a currently serving U.S. Army Officer, but he does not write for The Havok Journal in that capacity. His opinions are his own and they do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Defense.
Chris is from Spokane Washington and the oldest of nine siblings. He graduated from Mead Senior High school in 1998 and enlisted into the United States Army. He graduated from basic combat training at Ft Benning Georgia, and immediately was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division, which he later was selected to the Pathfinder Detachment which specialized in long range reconnaissance, Airborne operations, insertions, extractions, pilot recovery missions. After watched the attacks on the world Trade Center he immediately reenlisted and deployed to both Afghanistan and Iraq. His last tour was in Afghanistan in 2012 and he received a purple heart for sustaining injuries during a combat operation and later medically retired. Chris is now living in Texas and working in the Oil and Gas industry, He has two daughters that he considers his saving grace. He is also attending the University Of Texas, with a focus on Business Management.
Upon graduating high school in 1992, Chris joined the Marine Reserves and was assigned to Military Police Company “C” in Dayton, Ohio as a 0311 Infantry Rifleman. He later was cross trained as a 9051 Graves Registration & Mortuary Affairs Specialist, a job that he wasn’t enthusiastic about, however he could never foresee the events about to happen.
In 2003 Chris participated in the invasion of Iraq, handling the remains of the very first casualties of Operation Iraqi Freedom. In 2004 he volunteered to return and was severely wounded during combat operations against terrorists insurgents. In 2005 he once again volunteered to return to Iraq and thus was assigned to be the platoon commander of all Mortuary Affairs operations around Ramadi, Iraq and surrounding hostile areas.
After his return, Chris started to write as a means to deal with his Post Traumatic Stress from his three combat deployments, and in 2017 he decided to self publish his manuscript. “No Tougher Duty, No Greater Honor – a memoir of a Mortuary Affairs Marine” has received multiple literary awards and Chris has been invited to speak about his experiences on television and podcasts shows across the nation. By the telling of his story he hopes to honor the sacrifices of our fallen, the sacrifices their families continue to make, and honor those who ensured our fallen service members was returned with honor.
Mike grew up in Akron, Ohio. He is an Infantry officer in the U.S. Army with experience in special operations, counterterrorism, and counterinsurgency operations over twelve deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, including with the 75th Ranger Regiment. He’s been awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Valor and two Purple Hearts for wounds sustained in combat. He is a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, a Downing Scholar, and holds masters degrees from both Princeton and Liberty Universities. The views expressed on this website are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Army or DOD.
Originally from Lagos, Nigeria, Moriamo is an active duty Army Officer stationed overseas. Although her undergraduate degree was in Biology with a focus in Toxicology, she is currently working on her Master’s degree in Public Relations and Corporate Communications at Georgetown University. She is interested in communications, social media, and the effect it has on the population and international relations. She enjoys telling stories through writing, photography, and film-making. She is prior-service enlisted and previously completed a combat tour with the 1st Special Forces Group.
Additionally, she is a selfless servant and enjoys helping people in any way possible, specifically mental health challenges Service Members, and Veterans face on a daily basis. Her hobbies include outdoor adventures, history, education, reading, diving, Spartan racing, and she is an avid CrossFitter. Her articles in The Havok Journal represent her personal opinion and are not official positions of the U.S. Army or any other governmental entity.
Kate is an intelligence officer in the United States Army. She is a combat veteran and previously served downrange with the 5th Special Forces Group, and was also previously assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division. She received her commission via Officer Candidate School after rising to the rank of Sergeant. A graduate of Chaminade University, she completed two master’s degrees and is currently a candidate in the Doctor of Business Administration program at Temple University. Kate’s articles in The Havok Journal represent the personal experiences and opinions of the author and are not official publications of the United States Army or the U.S. Government.
Chad H. Lennon
Matthew is an officer in the United States Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps and has had a career spanning over twenty years including deployments to dusty, smelly places. He is an attorney specializing in international law and human rights, and holds degrees from Eastern Michigan University, Wake Forest University School of Law, and Georgetown University Law Center. He loves music, dogs, and whiskey, but hates D.C. traffic, video games that don’t have cheat codes, and mean people. He writes about national security law, culture, things that explode, and a little satire. The views expressed in his work are his own and do not reflect the policy of the U.S. Army or the U.S. Government, especially the satire.
Michael “Bama” Katt
Bama has been a rodeo cowboy, a professional stuntman, and, for 38 years and counting, a bouncer at various biker bars and redneck rat cage juke joints through the Deep South. He makes cool stuff as Crimson Tied Paragear, using knots his Army Ranger Scoutmaster taught him at Boy Scout summer camp deep in the Okinawan boonies back in 1972.
Ben is the producer and host of the nationally syndicated American Warrior Radio program. The mission of American Warrior Radio is to educate those who never served by telling the stories of our men & women in the military and first responder communities.
Because Ben never wore the uniform or carried a badge, he considers it his duty to support those who do. His community engagement includes the Tucson Metro Chamber Military Affairs Committee, Employer Support of the Guard & Reserve, USS Tucson 770 Club, and the Tucson Community Cares Foundation. He served as Honorary Commander for the 12th Air Force and is the Green Beret Foundation Arizona Ambassador.
Ayman is the founder and owner of Hybrid Wolf Blue Line Strategies, LLC. A veteran-owned training and consulting company for Law Enforcement officers and agencies. He combines his military and law enforcement experience to bring much-needed cutting-edge training to the law enforcement profession.
Ayman is not only an active police officer but also a law enforcement instructor and has taught across the East Coast of the United States. He offers a wide variety of training, such as advanced patrol tactics, mechanical breaching courses, designated marksman, and Human Performance under duress.
In addition, Ayman is an Army Combat Veteran who was deployed during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005. He became a police officer in 2007 after 8 years of service in the Army
Ayman has seen the ugliness of war and evil in the world. He survived two civil wars prior to immigrating to the United States in the late eighties.
His current position is the commander of his department’s Problem-Oriented Policing Unit. He leads a team of investigators that employs unconventional methods and Special Forces philosophy in achieving specific objectives in the communities he serves. These unconventional methods range from winning hearts and minds to specific strategic law enforcement actions to arrest and prosecute those who are the root cause of various crimes.
To reach Ayman, feel free to email him at email@example.com
Dave served 38 years in the USAF and Air National Guard as an aircraft crew chief, where he retired as a CMSgt. He has held a wide variety of technical, instructor, consultant, and leadership positions in his more than 40 years of civilian and military aviation experience. Dave holds an FAA Airframe and Powerplant license from the FAA, as well as a Master’s degree in Aeronautical Science. He currently runs his own consulting and training company and has written for numerous trade publications.
His true passion is exploring and writing about issues facing the military, and in particular, aircraft maintenance personnel.
Tyler is a veteran and an undergraduate senior in the Astrophysical Sciences department at Princeton University. He served enlisted for five years in the U.S. Marine Corps with HMLA-169 Vipers as a mechanic on UH-1Y Yankee and AH-1Z Cobras. He is passionate about opportunities for veterans in post-secondary education and has worked as an ambassador and tutor with Service-to-Schools and the Warrior-Scholar Program for the past three years. His writing is primarily concerned with political polarization and the freedom of expression and has written about such topics in the past for the Princeton Tory and Daily Princetonian. He is always thankful for thoughtful feedback and criticism and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lori is a full-time caregiver to two children with disabilities. She uses her life experiences and the medical knowledge she gained from serving as a Hospital Corpsman in the United States Navy to help others facing similar hardships. Lori is an author for The Havok Journal, an official columnist for AwareNow Magazine, and a contributor to The Mighty. Likewise, other news sites like MSN and Yahoo! News have also republished select articles Lori has written. Lori’s writing extends to children’s literature. Her debut picture book, GIFT FROM GOD, was self-published at the beginning of 2021 and placed as a finalist in two categories in the 2021 Next Generation Indie Book Awards. Lori’s long-term goals are to use her writing to educate others about, advocate for, and dismantle negative stereotypes regarding disability, mental health, and the military/veterans community.
David is a father, husband, son, boss, writer, beekeeper, outdoorsman, occasional teacher, compulsive elk hunter, Afghanistan veteran, and living proof that anyone is trainable. He is a 1994 South Dakota School of Mines graduate. David spent 12 years in the Army and Army Reserve as an Engineer Officer before that career was cut short with Afghanistan injuries. He spent decades as a consulting civil engineer working in communities all around the American West and now oversees his firm’s engineering department. David continues to amaze both friend and foe being an engineer who can write a story.
Jay is a Retired Canadian Army Sgt, who served 25 years to Queen and Country. He has multiple deployments both foreign and domestic including the Balkans and Afghanistan. When not smashing keys on a keyboard, he coaches little league baseball and competes nationally as a Service rifle, Pistol, and Precision long-range shooter. Jay is an avid hunter and outdoorsman and married to an amazing woman and has two incredible kids. He ends his writing with “VP” (Valor and Pride) and “88W out” (his vehicle’s call sign).
Autumn is a recent graduate in English-Literature and lives in Colorado Springs. During her personal time, Autumn likes hanging out with her super handsome horse, Red, and all the other 4-legged creatures in her life. Autumn is a fan of tall trees, forests, and all the wild and untamed parts of nature. She loves reading, researching, listening to others, and gaining as much insight into the physical and spiritual world as she can.
Autumn knows life can be hella hard, but she also thinks it is astonishing, amazing, complex, and fascinating. She hopes to be ever-growing and evolving, and she does her best to remain open to new perspectives, insights, or opinions that challenge her own. She would love to hear your personal stories and why one of her own articles resonated (or didn’t) with you. Autumn writes mostly about philosophy and mental health but loves to explore all topics. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Wendy has been a registered nurse for 22 years, currently works on an inpatient psychiatric unit, and is pursuing a writing career. She is married to a combat veteran who works in a prison. They share some very interesting dinner conversations.
Stephen B. Lewis
Steve has been an educator and an athletic coach for nearly 30 years. For much of that time, he was a successful high school and college football coach in Connecticut. After the events of 9-11-01, many of Steve’s former athletes joined the military. In the succeeding years, they didn’t return the same way they went out, and this led Steve to become interested in veteran affairs. In 2017 he conducted the first annual Comfort Walk, a 70-mile 3-day trek from Manchester CT to Providence RI on Memorial Day Weekend to raise awareness of veterans’ mental health issues. In 2017 Steve also assisted the veterans of the 1-24th Infantry Regiment in their Walk Of Life.
Steve regularly participates in the CT Run For The Fallen and has helped out in other veteran events and presentations including hosting a veteran’s assembly and classroom visit to his school. A civilian, Steve comes from a military family as the son of USMA 1952 and grandson November 1918. He has previously authored articles on fisheries issues and is looking forward to contributing his writing talents to military matters and veterans’ advocacy.
Kenneth M. Kapp
Ken was a Professor of Mathematics, a ceramicist, a welder, and an IBMer until downsized in 2000. He taught yoga until COVID-19 decided otherwise. He continues writing, living with his wife and beagle in Shorewood, Wisconsin. He enjoys chamber music and mysteries. He’s a homebrewer and runs whitewater rivers. Ken is a writer and his literary works can be found at https://www.kmkbooks.com/. He welcomes feedback on his articles and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ben is a former U.S. Army Mountain Infantry Platoon Sergeant and served in domestic and overseas roles from 2001-2018, including, from 2003-2005, as a sniper section leader. Besides his military service, Mr. Varlese worked on the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq’s protective security detail in various roles, and since 2018, he has also provided security consulting services for public and private sectors, including tactical training, physical and information security, executive protection, protective intelligence, risk management, insider threat mitigation, and anti-terrorism. Mr. Varlese earned a B.A. and an M.A. in Intelligence Studies from American Military University, a graduate certificate in Cyber Security from Colorado State University, and is currently in his second year of AMU’s Doctorate of Global Security program.
After graduation from Cornell University with a BS and MEng in Operations Research, Elana Duffy (Lana) worked for a year in civil engineering before enlisting in the Army as an Intelligence Collector, Interrogator, and Counterintelligence investigator. During her 10 years of active service, she was assigned around the world including deployments to both OEF and OIF. After a roadside bomb and several surgeries, she was ultimately awarded a Purple Heart and medically retired in 2012. She then returned to NYC to build www.pathfinder.vet – assisting fellow Veterans and Families reintegrating after service through giving them the ability to share their experiences with local support resources – and providing resources with the artificial intelligence-generated information and analysis they need to continue improving their programs and communities.
Joshua A. Lyons
Josh is a graduate of Indiana University 06’ where he was commissioned as a United States Army Air Defense Officer after serving as an enlisted 13-F for five years. He holds a Master’s in Military Operational Arts and Science from the United States Air Force Air Command Staff College. He most recently served as the Deputy Chief of Staff of a Divisional level unit and is currently managing the Maneuver Short Range Air Defense (M-SHORAD) family of systems while he waits for Battalion Command. He served three years as an Operational Advisor, Troop Commander, and Group S-3 within the U.S. Army Asymmetric Warfare Group. His other works include Defining Cross Domain Maneuver for the 21st Century, the U.S. Army Travel Awareness Handbook, and multiple articles within the Small Arms Review and the Journal of Asymmetric Warfare.
Some people say, “You only go around the world once.” But Nader Gamez can tell you that it can be done a few times. Nader has a wide background of experience in his upbringing, describing himself as “Basically a Chicago street thug combined with border town Texican and a side of Madison Midwesterner.” He graduated with a BA in International Studies from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, with a minor in drinking.
Since then, he has worked several law enforcement and correctional jobs starting with the Dane County Sheriff’s Office, the Waukesha Police Department, the Wisconsin Department of Corrections and Department of Health Services, and Mendota Mental Health Institute. He also competed in amateur boxing as well as with local rugby teams. Currently, he spends his time writing about his past successes and failures, showing future boxers the best ways to avoid a severe concussion, and striving to make the perfect spinach quiche.
Clay D is a father and veteran of 5 war zones with 9 combat deployments, 3 brothers KIA, and 1 Divorce. Most of his adult life was spent in the Middle East & South East Asia.
Jarrod L. Taylor
Jarrod L. Taylor, author of No Shit Here I Am, served as an infantryman in the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain and 25th Infantry Divisions from 2000 – 2009 followed by a short stint in the Army Reserve until mid-2010. During that time, he deployed to Uzbekistan and Afghanistan in 2001/02, Horn of Africa in 2003, Afghanistan in 2004/05, and Iraq from 2007/09. He received a BA in History from Eastern Illinois University in 2013, a Master of Arts in Education and an Education Specialist degree from University of the Cumberlands in 2019 and 2021. He continues to serve his community as an educator, working to change instructional practices to meet the needs of individual students. Jarrod resides in Shelbyville, Kentucky, with his high school sweetheart, Theresa, and their two children, Jacob and Claire.
Heath Hansen served as an infantryman with the 82nd Airborne Division. After deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, Hansen was injured in a parachuting accident and left military service. He attended San Diego State University and obtained a BS in Business – Financial Services. He now resides in Europe and regularly travels throughout the world.
Jake is a law enforcement officer and former Army Ranger with four deployments to Afghanistan.
Frank (Francis) Pauc is a graduate of West Point, Class of 1980. He completed the Military Intelligence Basic Course at Fort Huachuca and then went to Flight School at Fort Rucker. Frank was stationed with the 3rd Armor Division in West Germany at Fliegerhorst Airfield from December 1981 to January 1985. He flew Hueys and Black Hawks and was next assigned to the 7th Infantry Division at Fort Ord, CA. He got the hell out of the Army in August 1986.
Frank’s oldest son, Hans, despite Frank’s advice, enlisted in the Army in 2009. Hans became a tanker at Fort Knox. He was assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood. His unit was deployed to Iraq in July 2011. Hans is a combat vet. Hans was wounded in Iraq and killed people there. He came home damaged.
Frank worked for 28 years as a supervisor at a trucking company. He had his right leg crushed in a work-related forklift accident in 2009. Frank participated in a 165-mile-long peace walk from downtown Chicago to Battle Creek, MI, in the summer of 2014. He got busted for civil disobedience at a demonstration in front of Creech AFB in Nevada in March 2017. In February 2018, Frank joined members of the American Indian Movement in their once-in-a-decade Longest Walk. He went with them to eight different reservations and did everything the Native Americans did for several months. Frank spent several years teaching a citizenship class to Latinos at Voces de la Frontera in Milwaukee, WI.
Frank counts among his friends the following: a couple of Japanese Buddhist monks, two Orthodox Jewish rabbis, a family of Syrian refugees, several Texas rednecks, numerous gun enthusiasts, students of Zen, members of the Catholic Worker community, a blues guitarist, a few people who have done prison time (one is a Black man who did 16 years for shooting at a cop), Native Americans who got teargassed at the Standing Rock protests, Ironworkers, university math professors, a Carmelite lay person, homeless people, truck drivers, and recovering addicts.
Scott “Longboard” Chapman
Scott is a veteran of 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment. He arrived at Alpha Company one month before 9/11 and served his country during the early years of the “war on terror.” He completed 5 deployments, including the invasion of Iraq.
Honorably discharged in 2005 as a Ranger Fire Team leader, Chapman entered the executive protection space and provided high-end security coverage for some of the wealthiest and most influential people in the world.
Tired of watching his friends and teammates continue to perish overseas, Chapman felt a ‘gravity-well’ pull him back to Afghanistan. He left his paradise home and safe career on the Big Island of Hawaii to serve his country as an independent security contractor with Blackwater for the U.S. Intelligence community in Afghanistan. Chapman spent the next 6 years on a rigorous deployment schedule completing a total of 22 deployments before he was injured and unable to re-deploy in 2015.
The collapse of Afghanistan, representing a lifetime of sacrifice, coupled with the turbulent transition to Taliban rule left Chapman enraged. Chapman focused his anger into words and then co-authored his debut article, “Written in Taliban.”
Chapman is still active in various clandestine post-Afghanistan rescue mission efforts. He co-founded the “Afghan Medical Corps” – an underground network of doctors and hospitals who treat vulnerable at-risk Afghan patients and has fed, clothed, and provided ground assistance to thousands of starving and impoverished Afghans.
Desperate to reconcile combat stress injuries, Chapman began a quest of self-discovery that led him to a new perspective of the laws of Physics. A love of Relativity nestled with the quirky world of Quantum Mechanics has helped Chapman deploy the power of positive thinking to the veteran community.
Chapman writes with raw emotion the same way Van Gogh used color, form, and texture on a canvas. He mixes emotion with logic; left and right brain merged to paint a clear and beautiful picture of his strange world and unique perspectives.
One of Chapman’s goals is to bridge the gap between the forgotten warfighters and our civilian allies while paving the way for veterans to find that elusive peace. Join him to discover faint whispers of enlightenment gleaned by a shift in one’s perspective. Confirmed by the power of mathematics, the laws of Physics, and the power of positive thought.
Find Chapman at www.ScottChapmanAuthor.com with written and spoken palettes of words. Stay in touch through the final edits of his debut book, “A Ride Without a Destination.”
Marco A. Bongioanni
Marco served as an active duty U.S. Army officer from 2001-2010 before transitioning into the U.S. Army Reserve where he continues to serve as a senior leader. His service includes two combat deployments to Iraq and service in the Republic of Korea, Germany, Egypt, Djibouti, and Kuwait. Marco is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and has worked as a Readjustment Counseling Therapist with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, since 2014.
He works both in the individual and group setting, offering primarily outpatient counseling services for combat Veterans diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Marco holds a graduate degree from Fordham University, an undergraduate degree from Cornell University, and a Master of Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College. His professional interests include human behavior, applied psychology, and military cultural competence.
Marco has presented on these subjects extensively at professional conferences with the American Psychological Association, American Counseling Association, Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, New York Mental Health Counselors Association, Defense Center of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury, and National Association of Social Workers NY State Chapter.
He speaks Italian fluently and is comfortable in conversational French and Spanish. He was born and raised in New York City where he still lives with his spouse and is frequently involved in activities and initiatives within the local Veteran community.
Geoffrey is a published author who also writes for magazines and blogs. He retired from the military with multiple combat tours and then spent a career in the contract industry. He’s spent years living in Asia, Europe, and time in the Middle East, and South America. Geoffrey is an avid marathon runner who has competed in races from Anchorage to Cairo. He affectionally calls Dun Laoghaire, Ireland home. He currently lives in Maryland to be close to his children and grandchildren.
K.C. has made a career of being lucky and has managed to find something positive in nearly every poor decision he’s ever made, even if it was only a new perspective on how not to do something.
Enlisting in the U.S. Coast Guard in 2010 he became an Operations Specialist (radio and navigation) and did his first tour in Georgia guarding submarines from drunk fishermen. In 2014, tired of the heat and the bugs he transferred to a 210-foot medium endurance cutter in Washington state. The cutter then regularly deployed to the hot and buggy west coast of Central America to hunt down drug runners. Aboard USCGC Active he traveled 94,194 miles and personally handled enough cocaine to keep a small country high for a decade. Somewhere in there, he learned to write, if not spell.
Three years later, daunted by the prospect of spending the rest of his career in a windowless command center, he separated from active duty. After 13 different jobs ranging from beer brewer to dairy farmhand, to machinist, to Navy civilian contractor, he reenlisted in 2020 as a Coast Guard reservist, changing rates to Maritime Law Enforcement Specialist. When not helping the Navy assets in the Puget Sound troubleshoot radios, he’s on drill in Seattle doing water cop stuff and or flailing away at his keyboard. Though married and now a father, he misses the mission.
Mike is the editor-in-chief of The Havok Journal, an Air Force (USAF) veteran, and a retired Army Nurse Corps officer. After working 10 years as both a civilian Operating Room (OR) nurse and USAF OR nurse, he served in the Army from 2007-2019. The majority of his 23 years of professional civilian and military service were spent in clinical nursing, which included working in several ORs, in various clinical leadership and staff Officer positions with two deployments to Iraq.
Interested in joining our team of writers?
The Havok Journal has assembled an amazing team of talented writers, each with a diverse yet impressive background. If you are interested in joining the Havok Journal team, contact us at email@example.com with your resume and a sample of your writing.