When it comes to transitioning from military service to civilian life, many veterans wonder how the experiences and skills they’ve developed will translate to a new career. We’ve explored this topic in-depth, with our series of articles distilled from our interview with Lida Citroën, a branding expert who specializes in helping military veterans to transition into the civilian workforce. Through those discussions, we learned that while, yes, the transition poses its own unique challenges, military service does prepare you for corporate America in myriad ways.
Leadership. Strategic thinking. Problem-solving skills. And, of course, grace under pressure. These are just a few of the many invaluable skills that a military career develops—and that are essential to success in any career.
How far will these skills take you? Far, apparently. Some studies have found that about eight percent of Fortune 500 CEOs have military service in their backgrounds. In observance of Veteran’s Day, we’ve put together this list of CEOs who have also served in the military.
Robert J. Stevens - Lockheed Martin
Robert J. Stevens served as Lockheed Martin's CEO from 2004 until 2013. During his tenure, he also served as president and chairman. He joined the U.S. marines when he was 18 years old, and received several awards for his service, including the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation's Circle of Honor Award.
Alex Gorsky - Johnson & Johnson
Alex Gorsky is the chairman and CEO of Johnson & Johnson and has functioned in this role since 2012. He is only the company's seventh chief executive in its more than 70-year history. He served in the U.S. Army for six years after graduating from West Point and completed his service with the rank of captain. He holds an MBA from Wharton.
James A. Skinner - Walgreens Boots Alliance
James A. Skinner is the executive chairman of the Walgreens Boots Alliance, a holdings company that owns Walgreens pharmacy, as well as Boots pharmacy in the U.K. He served in the U.S. Navy for nearly ten years and completed two tours during the Vietnam War. He is also a former vice-chairman of McDonald's.
Sumner Redstone - Viacom
Sumner Redstone was the executive chairman of the massive media conglomerate Viacom, as well as the CBS Corporation, until his retirement in February 2016. Redstone served as a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army during World War II with the Signal Intelligence Service, an elite team that worked to intercept and interpret coded Japanese communications.
Richard Kinder - Kinder Morgan
Richard Kinder is a billionaire and the co-founder/executive chairman of Kinder Morgan, one of the largest energy infrastructure companies in the nation. He was a captain in the U.S. Army and served in Vietnam.
This is the last of three posts on veteran careers, based on an interview I conducted with branding expert Lida Citroën that I conducted earlier this year. In the two previous posts, I focused on Citroën's comments on some of the challenges facing veterans as they attempt to transition into the civilian workforce—chiefly related to cultural differences and stereotypes.
According to a May 2010 BLS report, there were 22 million veterans among the civilian population in 2009—and they're just as likely to be unemployed, despite the skills they developed over their years of service. In a lot of cases, the problem is that a career in the military doesn't necessarily prepare someone for the job search process in the civilian world.
For many of today’s law students, firm culture, location, and practice area remain the most important factors in deciding where to apply. Recently, students have discovered that evaluating these factors — and making the right choice for their legal career — is easier when opting to apply directly to firms for summer positions.
Every year during the week before Thanksgiving week, we take the time to recognize our public school communities by celebrating American Education Week. Now, this week isn’t just about teachers and students, it’s also about some of the unsung heroes of our education system, including administrative staff, janitors, cafeteria workers, and even our school bus drivers.