The Team


Every adventure starts with a leader

Tom Coyle

Tom Coyle is a 1997 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, the most prestigious military academy in the world. He is co-founder of Adventures in Leadership and the author of the book, "Leadership Lessons from the Battle of Gettysburg". He has written many articles on leadership and appeared on video blogs about leadership. He currently instructs leadership lessons for both high school students and working professionals. Clients have included Keller Williams and EcoGreen Energy. Tom's leadership programs focus on doing rather than lecturing in the classroom. He gets students and clients out of their comfort zone and working together through hands-on experiential leadership exercises. As a former Army officer and Department of State political officer he has led people in some of the most remote locations of the world, to include Afghanistan and Bosnia. Tom served in the United States Army from 1997 to 2004, achieving the rank of Captain. As an Army officer, he led soldiers of various backgrounds and successfully molded them into teams. Tom also served as a Foreign Service Officer for the U.S. Department of State. His overseas assignments included Bosnia and Afghanistan. His awards and decorations include the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, three Army Commendation Medals, and three Army Achievement Medals. After a successful career in public service, Tom turned his passion into Adventures in Leadership. His goal is to pass his lessons on to future generations of leaders.

SGM(ret) Jared D. Ross

SGM(ret) Jared D. Ross spent 24 years in the United States Special Operations Command working in a diverse array of environments and across the entire spectrum of global cultures. Additionally, during this same period, Jared taught a week-long orienteering course several times a year for 5 years. Jared has also had a long history of working with children and adolescents having coached top gymnastics prior to joining the military and more recently doing volunteer work for an orphanage while deployed to West Africa. Across the leadership opportunities Jared has enjoyed, he has found that working with children provides the most fertile ground for growth and self-actualization. It is this type of experience he finds most fulfilling. Jared includes in his civilian education a B.S. (2001, Summa Cum Laude) and an MBA (2013) from the George Washington University as well as graduating from the Harvard Business School’s General Management program in 2012.

Dr. Tom Gallagher, Ph.D.

Dr. Tom Gallagher, Ph.D. - Senior Advisor
Tom holds BA and MA degrees from Central Missouri State University and a Ph.D. in Educational Research and Psychology from the University of Kansas. He has taught secondary school and university, and has served as Dean of Learning Design and Development at Indianhead Technical College. He has also served as CEO of Western Wisconsin Technical College.

Tom, a licensed clinical and research psychologist, opened a private practice in Asuncion, Paraguay in 1991. In 1992, Tom also began serving as the US Ambassador’s representative to the Paraguayan Ministry of Education and played a leadership role in structuring and guiding the national movement for educational reform in Paraguay. He later founded Educational and Business Consultants of Paraguay, a firm that still operates and continues to provide business and IT consulting to private schools, industries, institutions, and government ministries throughout the southern cone of South America. During his last few years in Paraguay, Dr. Gallagher served on several corporate boards and was also the Director and General Manager of Nike-Paraguay. He also was the Director of Trinity College London’s international program.

Tom returned to the United States in 1998 and served the Governor of Wisconsin as Director of School-to-Work, Director of Tech Prep, Special Adviser to the Governor, and Executive Director of the Governor’s Work Based Learning Board. He also chaired the Governor’s oversight board for statewide educational reform. When Governor Thompson left Wisconsin to become HHS Secretary, Tom stayed in Wisconsin as transition advisor to the new governor. Immediately after September 11th, Tom responded to Secretary Thompson’s request and came to Washington as a presidential appointee. His goal was to serve as Secretary Thompson’s Assistant Secretary for Budget, Technology and Finance (SBTF) where he also chaired the HHS-CIO council. Later, at the National Institutes of Health, Tom continued to serve Secretary Thompson and NIH Director Elias Zerhouni, MD as the HHS-OS/NIH coordinator, the Director of NIH Community Liaison, and the NIH/OD representative to the National Biodefense Interagency Coordinating Committee at Fort Detrick, MD.

Most recently, Tom served as the HHS Account and Customer Relationship Manager for Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). In this position, he managed SAIC’s business relationship with HHS/OS as well as with all of the operating divisions of HHS and most especially with the NIH, the CDC and HRSA. Tom’s favorite quotation is “Don’t die on third base,” which is a testament to his desire to succeed.

Mark Mensack

Mark Mensack- Senior Advisor
Mark Mensack is the Principal of Mark Mensack LLC, a licensed Fiduciary consulting company. He is a nationally recognized fiduciary expert, and was a former Army officer and professor of philosophy at West Point. He recently received national attention for his court case, in which he blew the whistle on Morgan Stanley for their unfair practices.



Jay Heisler

Writer and University Lecturer
Jay Heisler is a writer and university lecturer based between Canada and Washington DC. He has been published by CNBC and currently writes for the Association of the United States Army (AUSA). He has an MA in Conflict Studies from the University of Ottawa and he has lived and worked in the Middle East, Eastern Europe and the UK. He has a career-long interest in political propaganda, media and warfare, and public diplomacy. Jay is a longtime staffer at DC-based Young Professionals in Foreign Policy, where he works on recruiting projects.