I was sitting on a plane last Friday reflecting on what I was thankful for this past year. Staring out over the Mojave Desert at 36,000 feet (and maybe feeling the wine if I’m being honest), I thought about how fortunate I am to be surrounded by a team of career public servants, each of whom are wildly successful in their diplomatic, military, or business careers. It’s rare to find people who are so purpose-driven that they’re willing to work without recognition or reward. When you find them, you must hold onto them to keep yourself grounded, humble, and considerate. I’m proud to announce the addition of one of those people to the Team Rubicon Global (TRG) team.
Starting December 14, 2015, Ken Harbaugh will transition from his current role as the COO of Team Rubicon USA to become the President & COO of TRG. He will lead day-to-day operations of TRG, helping establish Team Rubicon as the world’s first global veteran service organization. The journey to this point has been interesting.
Three years ago I was enjoying another glass of wine at an event in NYC with Ken. We caught up for awhile and near the end he told me he was looking for new opportunities and Team Rubicon interested him. He didn’t know it at time, but I attended the event with the objective of trying to recruit Ken into the TR family. We were experiencing massive growth, and our board and stakeholders advised us to recruit someone with more experience in running an organization of our size.
Ken had just the background. He’s a former Navy pilot and holds a JD from Yale Law. He served as an Electronic Warfare Mission Commander and taught naval history at The Citadel. Following his Naval service, he cofounded The Mission Continues and Got Your 6. He also worked at McKinsey & Co., and served as Executive Director of ServiceNation before joining TR.
In October 2013, Ken accepted the offer to work for Team Rubicon USA as COO, giving our advocates confidence to make major investments in our mission. Since then, Ken helped grow TR USA from a $2M organization to a $10M organization. Today, thanks in part to Ken’s leadership, Team Rubicon is name-requested by emergency managers, relief agencies, and elected officials during times of disaster.
The addition of Ken to the TRG team comes at a critical time. We are building the Team Rubicon UK organization and will soon launch in Australia. The position of President & COO requires a niche candidate, possessing both a strong military heritage as well as a solid background in nonprofit leadership. It also requires the right personality, someone who can lead with cultural intelligence, diplomacy, and a sense of humor. Raised in a military family, Ken grew up in Belgium, Germany, and England, where his father eventually served as a Defense Attache. We couldn’t ask for a better fit. Please join me in welcoming aboard Ken Harbaugh.
Cofounder and CEO
Team Rubicon Global, Ltd.