Mark L. Donald is one of the highest-decorated Afghan and Iraqi war veterans. Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the son of a retired U.S. Army Warrant Officer and a Mexican mother, Mark grew up appreciating the value of ethnic diversity. Inspired by his parent’s ideal of “service for others before self,” a desire to escape the difficulties at home, and an undying patriotic fervor, Mark enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at the age of 17. During his training as a Force Reconnaissance Marine, Mark discovered a personal calling to medicine. By the end of year he would don a Navy uniform, and for nearly a quarter of century afterwards Mark served as a Hospital Corpsman, Navy SEAL, and physician assistant. He was awarded the Navy Cross, the highest medal awarded by the Department of the Navy, for extraordinary heroism while engaged in enemy action against Al Qaeda fighters in southern Afghanistan. Following his retirement, Mark has worked to help a number of not-for-profit organizations supporting the military, and veteran and wounded causes, while completing his book Battle Ready: Memoir of a SEAL Warrior Medic. In addition to public speaking and business consulting, Mark is committed to projects that positively affect the youth of America.
The Hard Right Decision
We all face battles each day. Some are moral and relatively minor, such as the decision whether to turn in a lost wallet or pocket a well-needed windfall. Others are life changing, such as the decision to move in and care for an aging parent. The dichotomy of Mark’s life—as an officer having given an oath both to save lives, and to take them—will resonate with individuals whose personal requirements pit their heart against their needs.
The Greatest Fear – Change
Being Battle Ready is being able to face life’s challenges and the best way to get through extreme change. From business reorganization to unexpected changes in the marketplace Battle Ready is the understanding that success at these difficult decision points requires preparation, personal courage, and most importantly, support. Mark helps his audiences find the mental, moral and spiritual strength to be Battle Ready in all aspects of life and realize that coming up short isn’t failing.
Inspiring pilot who became one of the youngest woman to fly a single-engine plane around the world
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