Board of Directors

Our volunteer Board of Directors provides oversight and strategic guidance.

Zack Baddorf

Filmmaker / Navy Vet

Zack Baddorf is a journalist and filmmaker with more than 15 years of experience producing award-winning stories from more than 30 countries, including Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Pakistan, the West Bank, and Kashmir, as well as rebel-held territory in Sri Lanka and Burma.

His work has been published by the New York Times, Washington Post, BBC, Reuters, AP, The Guardian, CBS, ABC, NPR, the Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, Newsweek, VICE, RYOT, Al Jazeera English, and other publications in video, radio, photo, and print formats. His videos on social media alone have more than 30 million views.

While based in the Central African Republic, Baddorf broke the news of the American military ending its mission against the Lord’s Resistance Army. His in-depth reporting on the Syrian town of Moadamiyah contributed to humanitarian access being granted to besieged people there. Weeks before Russian troops invaded Crimea, his reporting from the peninsula highlighted its political importance in the conflict.

Baddorf works as director of video for the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism, crafting anti-ISIS videos. For a year in Afghanistan, he worked on rural, remote bases for the U.S. Special Operations Command as a civilian videographer, alongside Green Berets, Navy SEALs and Afghan security forces.

He has also worked as an adjunct professor at New York University and New York Film Academy, teaching public relations and broadcast journalism. He has a master of fine arts degree in documentary studies, a master of arts degree in international relations, another master’s in public relations and a bachelor's in journalism.

Phoebe Gavin

Quartz / Army Vet

Phoebe is a 26-year-old combat veteran of the US Army. She served on active duty for four and a half years while stationed at Fort Lewis, WA, and was deployed for a 15-month tour in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Phoebe holds a Bachelors Degree in Management which she acquired using the Post 9/11 GI Bill. She is currently Growth Editor at Quartz, a global business news site.

Mike Gentine

Schiff Hardin

Mike Gentine counsels manufacturers, retailers, and other commercial clients on legal and regulatory matters particularly in the area of consumer goods and product safety. Drawing from his federal government, private practice, and in-house experience, Mike advises on compliance strategies and government relations, helping clients advance legislative and policy objectives at the state and federal levels. His experience in the product recall space includes having negotiated or collaborated on consumer product and motor vehicle recalls in multiple countries.

Mike held multiple positions at the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). He served as senior counsel for the Office of CPSC Commissioner Joseph P. Mohorovic from 2014-2017, where he advised on various policy, enforcement, and ethics issues. He led several efforts to reform rules and regulations, including an initiative to reduce the paperwork burden on CPSC-regulated companies. He also worked at the CPSC as a legal fellow and law clerk in the Office of Commissioner Nancy Nord.

Most recently, Mike advised a major recreational product and motor vehicle manufacturer on product safety and compliance strategies, representing the company in agency proceedings, stakeholder organizations, and trade associations. He also served in a government relations role, advancing legislative and policy objectives before federal, state, and local governments. His legal training included service with the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee and U.S. Navy Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps.

Aided by a prior career in broadcast journalism, Mike is a frequent speaker at industry and other conferences on product safety, regulatory, compliance, and government affairs topics.

Geoffrey Ingersoll

The Daily Caller / Marine Corps Vet

Geoffrey Ingersoll is the editor in chief of The Daily Caller.

Geoffrey graduated from Penn State with an English degree in 2004. He then quickly achieved becoming a Teach For America reject, and enlisted in the Marines instead. He served honorably from 2005 to 2009, and ended active service as an Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran. He attended New York University's graduate j-school, studying documentary film and long-form reporting.

Geoffrey has reported from Afghanistan, Iraq, the Korean DMZ, and New Jersey.

Russell Midori

CBS News / Marine Corps Vet

Russell Midori has worked in multimedia production for ten years, both as a freelancer and on newsroom staffs. He has held a staff position as a journalist and cinematographer for CBS News network since 2017, traveling overseas and around North America to produce breaking news, character-driven features and the occasional long-form broadcast. He relies on his documentary background to influence storytelling on CBS This Morning, Evening News with Jeff Glor, 48 Hours, and CBS Sunday Morning.

Russell is an Overseas Press Club Foundation board member, a frequent guest lecturer at colleges and universities, and he volunteers as an alumni mentor for students in the Brooklyn College Radio and Television department.

He used the post-9/11 GI Bill to earn a bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism from Brooklyn College and a dual master’s degree in investigative journalism and documentary production from Columbia University. He has done field work in Iraq, Kurdistan, Korea, India, Mexico, Haiti and Standing Rock. He produced several segments for an Emmy-winning broadcast, and received an OPC award and a Mark of Excellence Award from the Society of Professional Journalists.

He served on active-duty in the Marine Corps from 2008 - 2012, and was twice named an honor graduate of courses at the Defense Information School. During his enlistment he held the rank of sergeant and served as the NCOIC of the Parris Island Public Affairs Office. In 2014 he did a six-month tour at Marine Forces Europe and Africa as a reservist, working as the director of photography and editor for Marine Corps video content shot across both continents.

Jen Paquette

The JPaq Group

Jen brings over 27 years of business experience in three sectors and several industries to JPG.

Jen's portfolio is diverse. She has consulted for numerous not for profits and small businesses over the years. She has found a niche by establishing JPG as a boutique shop that focuses on relationships and common values, missions and purposes. This approach creates a force-multiplication effect. She ensures the organizations she works have a foundation of operation excellence improving quality of life for those they serve.

Jen is known for her philanthropic efforts and for being a bulldog for those she serves. She founded the Steel Mags Sorority in late 2009 and was part of the founding team that established the Green Beret Foundation. She currently serves on the board of Dancing Angels Foundation, Captain Joseph House Foundation and is a founding board member for the proposed charter school, Prelude Preparatory School in San Antonio, TX. She also serves on Your Grateful Nation’s Board of Advisors for the Candidate Screening Committee and is a YGN mentor to transitioning Special Operation Forces service members. She is a member of Business Executives for National Security, Junior League of San Antonio, Greater Houston Women’s Chamber of Commerce, San Antonio Rotary, and the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce.

Jen has been featured in several publications such as Forbes and San Antonio Magazine. Jen has served on numerous boards and continues to do so. She has planned and executed hundreds of events raising millions for charities and has won numerous awards recognizing her patriotism and philanthropic work over the years. Most recently Jen has been nominated for Rice University’s Jones Citizen Award which will be announced mid-May 2019.

Jen graduated from Arizona State University (fork em'!!) with a BS in Business Administration majoring in Supply Chain Management. She received her Master’s in Public Administration with a concentration in not for profits and public policy from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas and an Executive MBA from Rice University (Hoot! Hoot!) in Houston, Texas.

Priya Sridhar

NBC San Diego / Navy Reserves

Priya Sridhar is a reporter for NBC San Diego. She comes to San Diego from San Antonio, Texas where she worked as a general assignment and investigative reporter for KENS5, a CBS affiliate.

Priya began her journalism career as a multimedia journalist for the NBC affiliates in Maine. She went on to work as a Washington correspondent for RT, an international news channel. She went on to work as the South Asia bureau chief and correspondent based in New Delhi, India.

After returning to the U.S., Priya worked as a video journalist for the Associated Press based in Chicago. She has also worked as a D.C. correspondent and morning show co-host for an international news channel, Arise, headquartered in Nigeria.

Some of her most memorable stories in her ten year journalism career include covering the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, MO for the Associated Press and Nigeria’s historic 2015 presidential elections.

Priya has a master’s degree in broadcast journalism from Northwestern University and a bachelor’s in international relations and history from Bowdoin College. Priya is also an officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve and serves as a Board Member of Military Veterans in Journalism.

Barbara Starr

CNN

Barbara Starr is CNN's Pentagon correspondent, based in Washington, D.C. Starr provides viewers with the latest national security news each day from the Pentagon, working her sources to report on the military campaigns against ISIS, investigations in terror attacks and military and intelligence operations. Starr appears regularly on The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, New Day and other shows across the network regularly breaking big news and delivering exclusive coverage on the U.S. military and political situation on a global scale.

In 2014, The Panetta Institute for Public Policy honored Starr with a Jefferson-Lincoln Award for her work in journalism. Since 2003, Starr has made repeated trips to Iraq, Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa, where she has been embedded with U.S. troops. She traveled to Beirut, Lebanon in 2006 with U.S. Marines tasked with evacuating Americans during Israel's war with Hezbollah. Starr has also reported directly from the Persian Gulf, Russia, Central America and the Chinese-North Korean border. In 2016, Starr was the only broadcast journalist to travel to Iraq and Syria with commanding general of U.S. Central Command, Gen. Joseph Votel, the highest-ranking U.S. military official to travel into Syria during the war, to report on the global fight and special operations training of local forces to combat ISIS.

Throughout her career, Starr has profiled numerous wounded troops, the plight of homeless veterans and reported on the fallen regularly from Section 60 at Arlington National Cemetery, the final resting place for veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Starr joined CNN in 2001 from ABC News where she had worked since 1998 as a producer for the network's news originating from the Pentagon, providing on- and off-air reporting on military and national security affairs. She also reported for Nightline, World News This Morning, World News Now, ABC Radio and ABCNews.com. Previously, Starr was the Washington, D.C., bureau chief for Jane's Defence Weekly, a London-based weekly newsmagazine, where for nine years she covered all aspects of national security, the intelligence community, defense and military policy. During this time, she conducted numerous one-on-one interviews with current secretaries of defense and directors of central intelligence. She also traveled to the Balkans, the Persian Gulf and NATO headquarters in Brussels. Before Jane's, Starr worked as a correspondent for Business Week from 1979-1988. Based in the magazine's Washington, D.C., bureau, she served as energy correspondent, covering OPEC and other environmental and economic matters.

While at ABC News, she won an Emmy Award as a location producer at NORAD/Cheyenne Mountain, covering the transition to the new millennium at Moscow rollover time.

Starr graduated from California State at Northridge with a bachelor of arts degree in journalism.

Paul Szoldra

Duffel Blog / Task & Purpose / Marine Corps Vet

My name is Paul Szoldra (pronounced ZOAL-druh). I am a reporter and editor based in southern California, mainly focused on national security issues. My byline can be found at Task & Purpose, Business Insider, and We Are The Mighty.

Me or my work have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, MSNBC, CBS News, USA Today, ABC News, Huffington Post, and the Columbia Journalism Review. It has also been cited by the Department of Defense, Department of the Army, Army Cyber Institute, House Armed Services Committee, House Judiciary Committee, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and in various books.

Prior to becoming a journalist, I served as a U.S. Marine infantryman for eight years. I deployed to the Asia-Pacific region and Afghanistan and served as a combat instructor at the Corps' School of Infantry.