LEAD Protégé2019-01-14T22:47:12+00:00

We Are Excited to Announce HillVets LEAD First Class of Protégés

Defense Fireteam

Aaron J. Kleiman
Aaron J. Kleiman
Aaron J. Kleiman is a defense professional with a unique combination of legislative, leadership, military, academic, and entrepreneurial experience. He has served for 16 years in the US Air Force, including 12 on Active Duty as a special operations aviator, and continues his service as an Air Liaison Officer in the Air National Guard providing combat air support to the US Army. He has over 1000 combat flight hours with deployments to Asia, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. Aaron transitioned from active duty in 2014 to attend the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where he earned a Master in Public Administration degree. After graduate school, Aaron served as a HillVets and DAV Congressional Fellow working on the Hill as a Legislative Assistant on various policy and legislative issues within the Veteran’s Affairs and Armed Services committees. A driven entrepreneur he is also Owner and President of LunarEagle Real Estate, overseeing a multi-state real estate and property management company with over $2 Million in real estate holdings. As a HillVets Fellow and New Politics Leadership Academy Ambassador Aaron continues to give back to his community working to empower, educate, and train America’s veterans to work in government and run for public office. In addition to his MPA from Harvard, Aaron holds a Master of Science in Military Studies from American Military University and a Bachelor’s degree in Aviation Business Administration from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. Aaron is married to Annie Kleiman; they have a four-year-old daughter.
Charles Lee
Charles Lee
Charles currently works at the Office of Intelligence and Analysis at US Department of Treasury. Prior to this, he served on active duty as a Captain in the United States Marine Corps.
Daniel Giamo
Daniel Giamo
Dan Giamo began his federal career in 2012 when he commissioned as an Artillery Officer in the United States Army. Dan served in the Army for four years, in both the United States and Eastern Europe. In 2018, he joined the Office of Management and Budget as a Program Examiner and Presidential Management Fellow, where he conducts policy development and analysis, program oversight, and budget formulation for various energy programs and issues.

Prior to Federal service, Dan worked in the private sector as a business intelligence analyst. Dan earned a B.A. in History from Fordham University and holds an International Master of Business Administration from IE Business School in Madrid.

Brent Eastwood
Brent Eastwood
Brent M. Eastwood, PhD is a former U.S. Active Duty Army Infantry Officer and Army National Guard member with five years of distinguished military service. Brent has legislative experience in state and local government. He served as a policy and legislative analyst for the Mayor of the City of Albuquerque, NM, as well as the main economic policy, trade and international relations adviser, legislative and policy analyst, and economics speech writer for the Governor of New Mexico. Brent currently serves as a Professorial Lecturer at The George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs. He holds a PhD in Political Science and Public Policy, an MA in International Relations, and an MS in Journalism.
Frank Tedeschi
Frank Tedeschi
Frank is a national security professional, with expertise in emergency and crisis management, strategic communications, training, planning, and Joint & Interagency contingency operations. He has over 21 years of tactical, operational, and strategic-level experience in the United States Army, beginning as an enlisted soldier and culminating as a Lieutenant Colonel. Frank is currently a HillVets House Fellow in the office of Senator Rounds.

Veteran Fireteam

Alisha Guffey
Alisha Guffey
Alisha is an Army veteran with 14+ yrs of professional experience in policy, business operations, media, and public relations across both private sector and the federal government. She has experience driving relationships forward and drafting U.S. policy with senior officials, foreign governments and multilateral organizations during her time at the U.S. State Department, Department of Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs, and with USAID. She holds a Master of International Business from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and a Bachelor of Arts from Indiana University. She also is an award-winning, Atlantic Council fellow for the founding of THE ASK & TELL PROJECT, an advocacy campaign to promote inclusion of LGBTQ military service.
Sean McClintock
Sean McClintock
Commander Sean McClintock is an active duty Naval Officer currently serving as a Defense Fellow on Capitol Hill. Sean was raised in Phoenix, Arizona and Senator John McCain nominated him to the United States Naval Academy where he graduated with a double-major in Political Science and English. He also earned a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College, is a graduate of the Joint Forces Staff College and is a Joint Qualified Officer (JQO). As a Naval Aviator, Sean has deployed worldwide in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and has logged over 2,500 flight hours in fixed and rotary wing aircraft. Sean is also qualified as a Navy Information Warfare Officer and while serving in a Joint tour he led the creation of U.S. Cyber Command’s first Joint Interagency Coordination Group to ensure whole of government responses to difficult cyber operational and policy issues. Sean is married with two young children who keep him busy and make life exciting.
Elliot Tommingo
Elliot Tommingo
Elliot enlisted in the USMC Reserves in 2006 while attending Iowa State University and was assigned to Echo Co, 2nd Bn, 24th Marines as an 0311 Rifleman. Upon graduating ISU in 2009 with a BA in Political Science, LCpl Tommingo was commissioned as a 2ndLt and began active duty service.
After graduating The Basic School and Communications Officer Course in Quantico, Virginia, 2ndLt Tommingo was stationed throughout US Pacific Command from 2010 – 2013 serving in Japan, Republic of Korea and The Philippines. He supported multiple humanitarian missions and assisted the ROK and Filipino militaries with defensive operations. From 2013 – 2016 Capt. Tommingo was stationed in the National Capital Region with Marine Corps Combat Development Command as a Requirements Officer overseeing the USMC software programs.

Capt Tommingo left active duty service in July 2016 and returned to the USMC Reserves as the Communications Officer for Marine Wing Support Squadron 472 out of Ft Dix, NJ. In May 2017, Capt. Tommingo took his current Outreach position with the Mayor’s Office of Veterans Affairs focused on events, programs and partnerships for the 30,000+ Veterans living in the District of Columbia. Elliot is a loyal D.C. United soccer fan and an uncle to an amazing niece. Vamos United! Semper Fi.

JC Henry
JC Henry
Major Jason “JC” Henry is a Department of Defense Legislative Fellow in the Senate for the 115th Congress. He serves in a nominative position as the legislative liaison between the United States Air Force, Department of Defense, and Members of Congress. He assists the Office of the Secretary of the Air Force regarding matters of national security, and provides sound leadership in areas of defense and veteran affairs. Major Henry is assigned as the Defense Fellow for United States Senator Jon Tester (MT) and serves as the primary advisor to the Senator on all defense, homeland security, foreign-policy, and veteran’s related legislative areas. He assists in the development of national defense policy positions and legislative initiatives, as well as aides in advancing national security priorities. JC is a 2001 graduate of Oklahoma State University and received his commission through Officer Training School in 2006. He is a career Logistics Readiness Officer and has held numerous leadership positions from working on the Air Staff to spanning three different major commands in various positions as an Operations Officer, Joint Base Installation Deployment Officer, Deployment & Distribution and Fuels Management Flight Commander, USAF Logistics Career Broadening Program, and Executive Officer to the Director 448th Supply Chain Management Wing. Prior to his current assignment he was the Chief, Systems Integration Branch assigned to the Directorate of Current Operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Pentagon, Washington D.C.
Ryan Britch
Ryan Britch
Ryan is a Former Army Infantryman (OEF 2010) and Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Swaziland 2015-2017). He is formerly of the American Legion where he focused on veterans mental health topics. He is currently with Habitat for Humanity.

Communications and Media Fireteam

David Max Korzen
David Max Korzen
David ‘Max’ Korzen is the managing editor at Lima Charlie News, a veterans-led publication encouraging former service members to pursue journalism and writing. A former active-duty Air Force pilot, Korzen served as a special operations aviation advisor developing the combat capabilities of partner air forces with the 6th Special Operations Squadron. A veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, he has worked, lived and studied extensively throughout the Middle East and Central Asia. Korzen holds a master’s degree in Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from George Washington University. His writings have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, US News and World Report, the Boston Globe, Real Clear Defense and Arab Studies Quarterly. In addition, Korzen is a first officer with PSA Airlines, operating regional jets under the American Airline brand and is a Defense Council member with the Truman National Security Project.
Joseph Betteley
Joseph Betteley
Joseph (Joe) Betteley graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in May 2018. He will start working at a law firm in Washington D.C. in the Fall of 2018 focusing on Antitrust and government investigations. Joe was a member of the first group of HillVets Fellows where he worked in the office of Congressman Paul Cook. Joe graduated summa cum laude from the University of Utah with a Bachelor’s degree in political science. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2001-2010 and the Utah Army National Guard from 2010-2013. He was a tactical systems operator on KC-130s, an embassy security guard, and a Russian Linguist.
John Lira
John Lira
John J Lira, a Texas native, currently serves as the Research Team Lead for National Service with the National Commission for Military, National, and Public Service. Prior to joining the Commission, John served as a Program Analyst at the Small Business Administration’s Office of Veterans Business Development where he led performance management and evaluation initiatives for the Boots to Business entrepreneurial training program.

John earned a Master of Science in Public Policy and Management from the Heinz College at Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Texas at San Antonio. He also studied at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School as a Public Policy and International Affairs fellow and has received a professional certificate in business administration from Georgetown University.

Marcus Nielsen
Marcus Nielsen
After graduating from Florida Atlantic University in 2010 with a Bachelors in Political Science, Marcus served in the U.S. Army as an Infantry officer. While in the Army, he graduated from Ranger school and served in Operation Enduring Freedom. After being honorably discharged as a 1st Lieutenant, he spent nine months in South America perfecting his Spanish. He graduated from Florida International University with a Juris Doctorate and International Masters in Business Administration. While in graduate school, he also studied Portuguese in Brazil as a Foreign Language and Area Studies fellow. After graduating in May 2018, he moved to DC to accept a Hillvets Fellowship where he currently works as a fellow on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
Andrew Gnau
Andrew Gnau
Andrew Gnau spent ten years as an officer in the Navy nuclear power program, serving and deploying twice on the guided missile destroyer USS BENFOLD (DDG-65) and the aircraft carrier USS CARL VINSON (CVN-70). His VINSON deployment coincided with the 9/11 attacks, for which VINSON was the first on-scene carrier at the commencement of Operation Enduring Freedom. He also spent two years at the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá, Colombia, working with the Colombian Navy’s senior leadership as a Security Assistance Officer. He joined VA’s Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs in 2017, where he currently serves as a Congressional Relations Officer. Andrew holds a B.S. in Systems Engineering from the United States Naval Academy, an M.S. in Nuclear Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management, and a Master of Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School. He is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Public Leadership from the University of San Francisco in conjunction with the Veterans Campaign. He is married to Dr. Viviana Avila-Gnau and has a 7-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son who keep his spare time well occupied.
Jon Cheatwood
Jon Cheatwood
Jon Cheatwood currently serves as a congressional fellow in the U.S. Senate. Prior to this appointment, Jon spent 11 years as an Army officer where he led infantry teams at the platoon and company-level while deploying to both Iraq and Afghanistan. In his final assignment, Jon taught courses in American Politics to cadets at the United States Military Academy at West Point. During the summer of 2015 he served alongside America’s diplomatic corps as a political attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing.

Jon holds a B.S. in American Politics from the U.S. Military Academy and a M.A. in Law and Diplomacy (MALD) from the Fletcher School at Tufts University. He is a term member with the Council on Foreign Relations and his writing has appeared in Foreign Policy, The Diplomat, and Military Review.