Name: Benjamin Leatherbury
Campus: DC Evening
Company: United States Marine Corps
Title/Role: Captain, Headquarters Marine Corps C4 (Command, Control, Communications, & Computers)
Hometown: Indianapolis, IN
Current Town: Alexandria, VA
Alma Mater: Indiana University
Family/Pets: Wife – Melody, just married on 23 Sep of this year!
Favorite D.C. Area Restaurant: The Fish Market (Old Town, Alexandria) we had our rehearsal dinner here. I also love Filomena in Georgetown.
Favorite Baltimore/DC Area Tourist Destination: We love Great Falls!
Favorite Travel Destination: I have done quite a bit of travel for work and pleasure (I have two blank pages left in my passport) but I think the best trip I’ve taken was a two + week trip to Vietnam.
Favorite Book: This is hard to choose but the best recent books I have read are Cloud Atlas and The Kite Runner
Favorite Movie: Probably The Departed or maybe the first of second Godfather movie.
Favorite Song/Artist: I’m a huge Springsteen fan but right now I’m listening to a new artist called Cody Jinx.
Currently Binging on Netflix/Hulu/Amazon: Walking Dead!!
When I’m Not at Work or Class, You’ll Find Me: Hanging out with my wife, probably being dragged to a furniture store for the next piece for our new townhome.
Dream Job: Besides President of the United States?! My dream job would be starting my own business, that is the ultimate plan.
What’s your Guilty Pleasure? What can’t you live without? I can’t live without Saturday afternoon college football. It is a total waste of a weekend, but I can’t help it.
Let’s Get to It
How long have you been in the military and which branch do you serve?
I have been in the military for almost ten years. I joined the United States Marine Corps after college.
Why did you decide to go back to school for you MBA? I wanted to take the next step in my career and believe an MBA is the best graduate degree to prepare me for continued service in the Marine Corps and to give me the tools to transition out of the military successfully whenever that time comes.
Since you are active duty, will you be called to serve while in school? If so, how will that impact your journey to earning an MBA? I just came off a deployment to the Middle East earlier this year before moving to DC. I don’t think I’ll be going on another one soon, but there is always a chance. I was given notice that my name is on a short list for a possible deployment when I arrived to my current unit this summer, but nothing has materialized yet. If tapped for a deployment, I plan to stay engaged in my studies and take online classes while overseas. It would be frustrating to interrupt my classes and the current schedule, but I am determined to finish on time.
What skills from serving do you think carry over to earning your MBA? How have you used those skills so far? I think organizational and critical thinking skills have carried over, especially on some of the strategy and leadership classes we have taken this semester. The Marine Corps is very much a small unit and team focused environment, I believe that has allowed me to mesh well with my classmates and their diverse backgrounds with the in-class and team assignments.
How do you plan to use your MBA, once you graduate? I plan to test the job market and see what is available if I wanted to transition out of the military. I’m not 100 percent decided, but I love the DC area and would like to stay, if at all possible. I have a family now and am looking for more stability in my life. The Marines Corps has been very good to me though, it will be very hard to leave!