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Jeff Decker


Military Service

U.S. Army Sergeant


4 years served


Seeking a career in nonprofit


Alexandria, VA

About Jeff

I would have never thought I would end up with a desk job.

In the Army, I was a Ranger and loved the work - multiple deployments, great colleagues, and the opportunity to prove myself mentally and physically. I was the first to graduate Ft. Lewis’s Primary Leadership and Development Course with a 100% average. In 2007, my partner and I placed 7th in the Best Ranger Competition. Being a Ranger was ‘my thing’.

Then everything changed.

On my 4th deployment my perspective shifted. I became deeply interested in the big picture of war - the causes and consequences - and not just the physical act of conducting it. I began to seek a better understanding of war.

After the Army, I became a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar and set out to earn an MS in International Relations (Laws) from Bond University in Australia. Graduating with honors, I was fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to teach at Bond while pursuing a PhD. I couldn’t resist.

I had found my calling.

For 4 years I lived in permanent summer. I spent American winter in Australian summer writing my dissertation on military contracting in Iraq. I spent Australian winter in the US sharpening my international policy and national security policy skills at the RAND Corporation, renowned workshops, and conducting field research. Through these endeavors I was able to pursue my two great passions - public policy and national service!

Service through research.

As I near the end of my PhD, I continue to serve through research. I recently co-authored a manuscript that analyzes the lessons from the past 13 years of war, which was one of the highest trending RAND publications in 2014. I have also founded a non-profit called Veteran at Ease™ which has developed an accessible, private, and personalized approach to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) support.

Now, back in the US, my days of endless summer are over but the rewarding work behind a desk is just beginning!

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