At a Glance
Quick Facts about Ryan
My Military Service
Electricians Mate 3rd Class, Diver
At 17 my parents signed the parental consent to enlist form. I served as a Navy diver aboard the USS Emory S. Land AS-39 in Norfolk, VA.
During my enlistment in the Navy, I learned the value of teamwork, mission accomplishment, and discipline. As a diver, my duties consisted of working below the waterline on submarines.
It was after the horrific events of 9/11 that I decided I would commission in the Marine Corps. If not me, then who? It was the Corps that developed me into the selfless leader I have become today.
It was the Corps that taught me how to lead from the front. A Marine officer never eats before his fellow enlisted Marines. This significant yet simple practice shows fellow enlisted Marines that they are the most important part of the Corps. Many politicians do not understand this worthwhile concept in regards to sacrifice and service.
I served as CH-46E Helicopter Pilot and Operations Officer with three combat deployments to Al Anbar Province in the western area of Iraq. I learned the true, painful meaning of sacrifice when my unit lost a crew of seven due to enemy fire. This tragic day shaped my belief that we must make sacrifices if we want to see change.
Army National Guard
Chief Warrant Officer 2
After leaving the Marine Corps, I believed it was time to start a new chapter in the private sector. I have done that and have contributed to many different organizations, non-profits, and businesses. I am currently a project manager for a local, small specialty residential construction business.
But the drive to serve still exists. I am proud to currently serve as a citizen soldier and UH-60L Blackhawk Helicopter Pilot in the North Carolina Army National Guard.
Let me introduce myself…
I was born and raised in the beautiful, mountainous Reno/Carson area of Nevada. Educated in public schools and trained in the discipline of martial arts, I decided I wanted to serve and also see what else was out there in the world. With the consent of my parents, I enlisted in the Navy at 17 years old after I graduated high school. I experienced the excitement of serving as a Navy diver aboard the USS Emory S Land, in Norfolk VA. Upon completion of my four-year service, I went back home and attended the University of Nevada-Reno, where I also played rugby, and earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in International Affairs.
On September 11, 2001, we were all altered permanently when the horrific events of 9/11 happened. I decided to commission in the Marine Corps as an officer to serve our country after this attack. I was trained in flight school to fly the CH-46E helicopter and was stationed out of Camp Pendleton, CA. After eight years and three combat deployments to Operation Iraqi Freedom, I left the Marine Corps to move to Boston to help a close friend in need who had been recently hurt in a severe accident.
While in Boston I decided to focus on leadership and volunteer service. I graduated from Northeastern University with a Master’s of Science in Leadership and joined the private sector. In the vein of leadership and volunteer service, I became a board member of the Seven Stars Foundation, a founder of OUTVETS, and joined as a political partner with the Truman National Security Project.
Additionally, I was an active citizen in our democracy and worked on campaigns: I was a fellow, a GOTV (Get out the Vote) regional coordinator with a Presidential campaign, a veteran/military family coordinator for a Senatorial campaign.
Continuing my quest to serve, I moved to Charlotte because of the abundance of opportunities our city offers its’ residents. The proximity to the awesome beaches of the Carolinas and the short drive to the mountains was a huge lifestyle bonus! I was excited about the possibilities as many newcomers are and I was ready for the new challenge of building my life here in our happening city. I began a new career as a project manager for a Charlotte-based residential construction small-business. The desire to serve my country continued, and I joined the National Guard where I currently fly Blackhawks out of the aviation facility in Salisbury, NC.
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