Todd Hunter

Todd Hunter

Assistant National Communications Director


DAV (Disabled American Veterans)

Milestones

My road in life took a while to figure out.
I didn't fully apply myself in high school, but I always enjoyed journalism & TV production classes.
I joined the Marines as a combat correspondent; I sought out stories that the media wouldn't cover.
I was selected as the U.S. Department of Defense's Broadcast Journalist of the Year in 2009.
That was the first time I truly felt validated in my skills; I felt like I could be successful.
I was also selected as the U.S. Marine Corps' Broadcast Journalist of the Year in 2009, 2011 & 2012.
In 2013, I felt like it was time to move on from the military, put down roots, and start a family.
In 2 years, I went from not caring about ever getting a formal degree to earning my master's degree.
I interned with the White House's Office of Digital Strategy in 2014; I'm now working at DAV.
Keep following my journey

Education

High School
Boone High School
Vocational
Public Affairs
U.S. Dept. of Defense Information School
Bachelor
Communication, General
Thomas Edison State College
Bachelor
Military Motion Media program
Syracuse University
Graduate
Strategic Studies, General
American University

Career

Assistant National Communications Director

I'm 'the video guy' for DAV's social media team; I oversee video production for all of our accounts.

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Writing
Armed Services
Communicating / Sharing Stories

Day to Day

There are three main things that I spend my days doing: I'll either work on editing videos, take part in congressional hearings and/or shoot videos on Capitol Hill, or take part in strategic meetings with various other veterans service organizations, or the Department of Veterans Affairs. I try to work on my passion of making videos as often as possible, while simultaneously working behind the scenes to improve the lives of my fellow veterans.

Skills & Qualities Beyond School

I think that passion can take you a long way; I always say that if you've got the passion, you can learn the skills. I went the formal education route in the end, but most of the skills I learned in my undergrad and graduate programs, I had actually already learned in the military long before I ever picked up a book about communications. I think it's best to get that combination of formal education and practical experience.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for high school students

Your first step should always just be to have a goal, and to be willing to do what you need to do to get there. Know that you can be just as successful without a formal degree as you can be with one, but you certainly can't just go through the motions, get good grades, and expect to make a good career out of something without having a passion for it. Put in the work and remember that nothing comes easy.

Recommended Education

My career is not related to what I studied. I'd recommend this path instead:

undergrad
Bachelor

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Peers:

"Why would you want to get out of the military? You'll never have it as good as you do right now."