Contact our Advisors at 919-827-0898 or schedule a call
Michael J. Penney: Chief Advisor - Michael is a combat veteran of Iraq & Afghanistan. He served in the United States Marine Corps infantry with 3rd Battalion 7th Marines deploying twice to Ramadi, Iraq, in 2005-2006 and 2007. Michael reenlisted during his second tour and transferred to Quantico to become a weapons instructor. He is certified as a combat marksmanship coach, trainer and instructor trainer. He’s a formal school instructor, school trained designated marksman, small arms weapons instructor and foreign weapons instructor.
In 2011 Michael deployed on a third combat tour, this time with 1st battalion 5th Marines, leading a section of advisors through Kajaki & Sangin Afghanistan. Having served in two wars, over 8 years of service in the Corps, Michael was honorably discharged as a Sergeant. Now he is an entrepreneur, author, and public speaker.
Michael is Co-founder of Cigars and Sea Stories, a podcast devoted to sharing stories with veterans who are adding value to the world. In March of 2016 he presented at TEDxRaleigh, “What’s Your IED: How to Add Value During Life's Explosive Situations”, combining military and personal experiences in an effort to bridge the lives of veterans and civilians.
Michael is the creator of the “5 Paragraph Business Plan” - taking the military operations order format and applying it to business. He currently works as an advisor to 5paragraph.com, calling upon his military experience, to assess, train, advise, and assist businesses in the implementation of the 5 Paragraph Business Plan to empower leaders with an action oriented business management tool focused on business creation, growth, and long term sustainability.
Michael is a proud father of four, married, and resides near Raleigh, North Carolina.
Bennett Tanton: Business Development & Employee Retention Advisor - Bennett is a former Reconnaissance Marine and US Army Infantryman. He holds a BA in Security Management and is a graduate of 2014 Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans (EBV) at Syracuse University. Bennett is the Co-Founder of Cigars & Sea Stories and is the Managing Editor of Change Your POV Podcast Network. Bennett is also the founder of Battle Sight Technologies. Bennett is a Certified Peer Support Specialist and has dedicated his life to helping veterans navigate the system and aid them in adding value to their communities.
Adam Bird: Media Outreach & Leadership Development Advisor - Born in Wisconsin, Adam developed the love for the outdoors at a very young age. Fishing, hunting and playing sports was an everyday thing. After High school Adam joined the Army National Guard where he worked in various positions until mid 2007 when he left the Military to pursue other things and take custody of his son.
Adam has his degree in Business Management. He is an experienced entrepreneur and manager in building companies, training, mentoring, leading, and educating teams to success; Qualified professional in the development of Top Performer Status team members; Adam is a highly skilled professional in creating, developing, and implementing monthly department plans and achieving goals.
Currently Adam is the Founder and CEO of Heroes Media Group LLC. Heroes Media Group is a broadcasting platform dedicated to providing a voice for our community heroes and those who support them. The Group is dedicated to providing education, entertainment and empowerment to: Active Duty, Veteran, Firefighters, First Responders, Law Enforcement, Educators, Medical Professionals, and Clergy.
Jeff Adamec: Systems Engineering & Management Advisor- Jeff was born and raised in New Jersey. Joined the US Army right after high school in 1995. Served as a combat medic in the 82nd Airborne Division. He volunteered to attend Ranger Indoctrination Program to be accepted in the 2nd Bn 75th Ranger Regt as a combat medic. In 1999 he attended Special Forces Assessment and Selection and was selected to begin training to be a Green Beret Weapons NCO. He has deployed to Combat as a Green Beret 6 times, 2 tours in Iraq, 4 tours in Afghanistan.
He has been awarded a Silver Star, 4 Bronze Stars, an Army Commendation Medal with Valor “V” Device, and a Purple Heart for these combat deployments. He was wounded in 2009 and medically retired in 2013. Jeff spent a few years after retirement doing overseas contract work, and even a Department of Homeland Security Anti-Terrorism Specialist for the Mid-West region. He walked away from it and began taking classes for IT professional certifications and after a year of school and temp jobs in IT, he was hired to work for Cisco as a Systems Administrator.
Jeff does consultation work and trains leadership and team building courses, public speaking on veteran issues and motivational talks. He also is a contributor to ChangeYourPOV.com and it podcast network as the host of Changing Hearts and Minds. Jeff has also authored articles and books and lives in Fayetteville NC with his wife of over 20 years and their 2 children.
John Brady U.S. Army Major (ret): Sales & Client Services Advisor - John enlisted in the Army after high school. He pursued an education while serving in the artillery and deploying around the globe. With a Masters in Business and healthcare Administration from Grantham University, John accepted a commission as an officer. After becoming an officer, John transferred from big Army to the North Carolina National Guard. He established himself as a "soldier's leader" in the Guard, spending more time out of the office and in the field. As a Commander, his tasks included planning, and developing strategies to train professional soldiers and delegate his authority throughout the ranks in order to achieve a common mission. His entire military service, John used the 5 Paragraph format.
John has experience working in a variety of industries conducting sales, marketing & business development management. He is an experienced entrepreneur, operating on the 5 Paragraph Business Plan.
John Brady brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table whenever we're helping business leaders. He also happens to be a genuinely great guy. He and his wife have raised a beautiful family. Now empty nesters, they enjoy time out in rural N.C... John is active in his church and the greater North Carolina community, mentoring young leaders.
Diane Baren: Content Creation & Human Resources Material Development - grew up in Oak Park, Illinois and graduated early from high school. In college she started two small businesses – selling Mace protective spray, and hand painting and selling cotton jackets she purchased for a dollar each from the University. After earning a Bachelor’s degree in Interior Design Diane started a contracting business, designing and installing custom closets, garages, and storage spaces in the Chicago area.
Today Diane’s business expertise is Human Resources. She brings over 30 years of business administration experience to the 5Paragraph.com mission. She’s seen the inside workings of business - as an employee at large corporations, public universities, and private practices.
Diane views life of the military Veteran through a Human Resources lens. Her compassion stems from recognizing that combat-injured service members may have skill-sets that go under-used toward providing their own livelihood as a Veteran.
She helps corporations and individuals bridge the military-civilian culture gap. As a keen supporter of Veterans who are artists and creative types, Diane has a rare network of connections across the country. She is passionate about helping the best artists who are Veterans make sales of their artwork. As the Founder of Sadie’s Place for Veterans’ Arts (SPVA) she aims to introduce creative Vets with professionals to partner with in reaching their artistic goals.